Soap biggest age-gap romances - including Corrie star, 66, and hot lingerie model, 26

Over the weekend, former Coronation Street star Kym Marsh, 48, went public with her new man Samuel Thomas, describing him as her "soulmate". The pair met whilst performing in 101 Dalmations: The Musical together, with Kym describing 29 year old Samuel as "the most amazing man ever".

Due to their 19 year age gap, the couple faced a backlash on social media, with some leaving negative comments on Kym's social media. On Monday, Kym turned off the comments on her Instagram post, having previously told trolls to "do one" after one wrote: "Jesus, another amazing man. 5 minute wonder. He looks like your son."

But Kym isn't the only soap star who believes age is just a number - here's a look at more actors in age gap relationships...

Michelle Collins

Michelle Collins and her husband Mike
Michelle has no time for those who troll her over her age gap relationship -Credit:Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for BFI

Michelle Collins has always fiercely defended her marriage to a man 22 years her junior, hitting back at critics who have taken issue with the age gap.

The 62 year old former EastEnders actress tied the knot with 38 year old Mike Davidson in August 2022, after a decade-long relationship.

Michelle took to social media to slam those fixated on their age difference, stating: "I am so fed up with people obsessed with age. I don't care about it, it's others that care. Age is just a number."

She also shared wisdom from Hollywood icon Richard Gere, quoting: "I am old, but my heart is young. We always have the same years in our soul, I know it's the perfect age. Each year is special and precious and we can live in each. Don't regret getting old, it's a privilege that not everyone has."

Previously lambasted with the label "cougar," Michelle has been outspoken against the term and the double standards it represents.

In 2018, she expressed her frustration: "Mike is 22 years younger than me and I'm regarded as a predator. It drives me mad. People call him my toyboy beau. He's nearly 35, for God's sake."

She continued, ridiculing the label and its implications: "I laugh about it now but it is annoying. And I hate that word cougar. I can't stand it. I find it so demeaning. A cougar is a predator going around looking for young flesh. I'm certainly not like that."

Maisie Smith

Max George and Maisie Smith
Max and Maisie have been trolled over their age gap relationship -Credit:Alan Chapman/Dave Benett/Getty Images

Former EastEnders actress Maisie Smith and The Wanted's Max George have consistently defended their relationship due to their 13-year age difference.

Last year, Maisie, known for her role as Tiffany Butcher in the BBC soap, spoke about the trolling she received, saying: "If it wasn't that, it would be something else. People don't understand what goes on behind closed doors in a relationship, and I think they also forget that I'm a consenting 21 year old woman who's actually been working longer than Max! ".

In 2022, Max, 35, stated: "It never enters my mind. Maisie has already done so many things that I'm in awe of I look up to her."

The pair first met while competing in the 2020 series of Strictly Come Dancing, with their friendship turning into a romantic relationship in the summer of 2022.

Living together in Manchester, Maisie spoke about their relationship, saying: "He is definitely The One. He's just perfect. We are very, very happy."

Chris Quinten

Chris Quinten shot to fame as Gail Platt’s murdered husband Brian Tisley on ITV soap Coronation Street. After leaving the soap in 1989, he moved into strip club management.

He now runs The Secret Lounge in Hammersmith, West London, where he met fiancée Robyn Delabarre, after she auditioned for a job as a lap dancer at the gentlemen’s club.

Chris, 66, and Robyn, who is 40 years his junior, enjoyed a whirlwind seven-month romance before he proposed at her 21st birthday party in 2019.

The actor got down on one knee in a heartwarming video as the pair were on holiday in Mykonos, seven months after they began dating.

The couple appeared on This Morning to discuss their relationship. Chris told Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield: “I’d worked seven years at Stringfellows, and I had no connection with anyone. I just fell in love with her personality."

He added: “We love the same music, and it just was a snowball of events – it was just one combination after another."

Robyn added: “He’s much older, but we had such a nice connection and just got on well."

Discussing the proposal, Chris added: “I’d not really been drinking either, so I’d had no excuse!

“Robin kept saying she wanted a stripper, we wanted a stripper, but we couldn’t get one, so I’m going to strip.

“That’s when I put the music down, and popped the question.”

Cheryl Fergison

Cheryl Fergison and her husband
Corrie star Chris Quinten and Robin Delaberre

Cheryl Fergison, 58, met her second husband, Yassine el Jamouni, 37, online back in 2010 and travelled to his home of Agadir, Morocco. Their romance went from strength to strength and by the following June they tied the knot.

The EastEnders star previously spoke out against those who have doubts about her marriage. Speaking to the Mirror, she explained that when her son Alex, 22, asks Alexa a fact about his mum, it immediately responds with: "Cheryl Fergison is married to a goatherd from Morocco".

Expressing her annoyance at this, Cheryl said: "Why's that the first fact that comes up? And it's wrong!

"We don't have any goats. We've never had any goats near us! But that's the first thing people say. I find it really difficult to pin down why – there's racism, sexism, ageism – all the isms are there when people talk about our relationship."

Further slamming trolls who don't understand her relationship, she continued: "The world has become so cynical. People think it's got to be a con, it's got to be a problem. But I say, 'It hasn't got to be anything. Just stop it!'"

Tamzin Outhwaite

Tamzin and her boyfriend Tom
There's 21 year age gap with Cheryl and her husband -Credit:cherylfergison1/instagram

EastEnders' Tamzin Outhwaite, 53, and Tom Child, 31, started dating after they met at a yoga treat in 2017. She admitted she feels “sexier” with him, following her past relationship with her ex husband Tom Ellis.

The star doesn’t find the age gap an issue and said she isn’t bothered by others who do, as she revealed the secret to her successful romance.

The actress spoke out in defence of her relationship, as she said: “I get the odd strange comment, saying, ‘You look old enough to be his mother.’ Which makes me want to say, ‘Well, I am old enough to be his mother, but I’m not!’

“The age gap is not a thing in our relationship any more. We use it as comedy to make people laugh but we never have to discuss it," she told The Sun.

Tamzin also shared the key secrets to her relationship’s success, adding: “I find exercising or walking around the house in your underwear gives you more motivation to keep looking after yourself, especially when it’s just Tom in the house.”