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Wild at Heart is back this weekend, and as well as the much-loved familiar faces making a return, the new series brings with it two new stars as well.
Robert Bathurst, who viewers will know as Sir Anthony Strallan from Downton Abbey, and Strictly Come Dancing champion Jill Halfpenny, have both signed up to star in the seventh series of the hugely successful family drama.
Robert plays the role of talented vet and businessman Ed Lynch, who clashes with lead actor Danny (Stephen Tompkinson) over the care of some of the animals in the safari park.
“I’m very excited Ed is going to be shaking things up for Danny and Du Plessis," he said. "Wild at Heart is one of the most successful dramas of the last decade and I’m thoroughly looking forward to filming the new series and working with the rest of the cast.”
Jill meanwhile will play Ed’s feisty ex-wife Fiona, who pops up towards the end of the series to shake things up in Leopard’s Den.
A lost, lonely figure, it soon becomes clear that Fiona is the reason behind Ed’s sour and grumpy demeanour. A huge flirt, Fiona left Ed for a younger model – but is now intent on winning him back.
And Jill said she can’t wait for her character to appear on screen. She said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be joining the cast of Wild at Heart in Africa. Fiona Lynch is certainly a fun and feisty character and will no doubt cause quite a few headaches for Ed and Danny, I can't wait!”
Wild at Heart returns to STV this Sunday (January 8) at 8.30pm.