Emmerdale’s Fiona Wade – Priya wouldn’t win in a catfight with Leyla!

Get ready for the claws to come out as Priya Kotecha’s affair with Pete Barton is set to explode in the coming weeks.

And the tension between the secret lovers is going to reach fever pitch next week when Leyla Harding proposes to Pete!

The poor villager has no idea her husband-to-be is actually sleeping with her best friend, but as this is soapland, the secret will be revealed and Fiona Wade, who plays Priya, predicts a cat fight!

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What’s happened to the girl code?

I know! It’s awful, sorry! She’s been her absolute go-to as well, so it’s bad, really bad. She probably thinks she can trust Priya through anything. We have a lot of trust in each other, we confide in each other a lot. So that’s going to be a really big betrayal.

What did you think when you first saw in the scripts that this was going to happen?

We were like, ‘oh gosh, we’re going to fight, and we’re going to have to hate each other’. Because usually we have quite girlie, giggly, fun scenes. But it’s good we get to work together lots.

Secrets never stay buried for long, so are you looking forward to it all coming out?

I am, yeah, but I think Priya’s going to be very friendless! And I don’t know that far ahead, I know it’s going to all, yeah, at some point for sure.

Why doesn’t Priya just walk away?

I just think Priya’s been through a lot – I think it was just the right time but the wrong place, and she’d never even really spoken to Pete before. But I think Priya’s been through a lot, she’s got a lot of insecurities, and she has a need in that moment, and I don’t even think she thought about Leyla. But now she’s obviously just feeling awful.

Are they both too good for Pete?

Yes! But Priya’s also a strong woman, she’s feisty, she goes for what she wants. And in the past she has been not completely innocent all the time. She was very loyal to Rakesh for a long time, I think that’s where she became so strait-laced. But deep down, she has been naughtier in the past.

She feels like she deserves a bit of fun?

Yeah, I think that’s where she was like, everyone thinks I’m this strait-laced princess, no, actually… and I think that’s where it just all went a little bit wrong with the wrong guy.

Does she still have feelings for Pete?

I don’t think it was ever about feelings. I think now she’s starting to have feelings, because she does want the husband and the family unit, I think she craves that a lot. So I think at first she wasn’t thinking about Pete like that at all, but I think now, definitely, after she’s slept with him a couple of times. I think with Priya there’s always a bit more going on, so I think she’s falling for him a little bit. She has feelings for him.

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Who are the fans siding with?

You see a few that kind of like Priya and Pete but at the moment Priya’s definitely, she’s the bad girl right now. She’s the naughty girl.

Are you worried about a backlash from fans?

Not really, do you know what, it’s drama, and for me I know I always say it but for me as an actress I like to play drama, it’s more interesting for me so at least if I’m doing that I’m doing my job right. Sometimes you think ‘oh gosh people maybe they don’t like me’ but it’s my character and they’re not meant to like what I’m doing.

Is Priya there when Leyla proposes to Pete?

Yeah she does walk in right at the end tail of it and it’s just super awkward and yeah it’s hard and she’s obviously very, I think she’s starting to feel very upset then. There’s all these other little complications as well, I can’t remember what I’ve said and what’s been on now, what we’ve filmed but yeah so she thinks she’s pregnant so that is I think when she starts to also have feelings because then it becomes much more complicated. Because then she thinks ‘my goodness I’m going to just be another single mum again’ so yeah she starts to feel hurt.

But Nell hears all of this and they don’t know that do they?

Yeah, she comes to me yeah afterwards so somebody knows now. So that’s the thing, especially with Nell knowing the one… so yes she knows.

Would you two like to see Priya and Leyla have a full on cat fight when the truth comes out?

We always have these conversations on set and I’m like I think I’d win but then yeah probably not. But I’m strong!


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