Emmerdale‘s Charlotte Bellamy tells Soaplife that Laurel is devastated when Gabby chooses to live with Ashley. And with the news that Gabby’s real mum Bernice is on her way back, there’s worse to come…

Moving into Marlon’s isn’t turning out to be a romantic dream come true for Laurel, is it?
“No, it certainly isn’t. Gabby’s taken a real dislike to Marlon. It’s not personal but, to Gabby, Marlon is the reason she, Arthur, Laurel and Ashley are no longer a happy family. I think the writers are handling this very well and very realistically. It’s what often happens when a family unravels.”

What brings things to a head?
“Gabby’s off school sick and behaving badly to irritate Laurel. She then sees Laurel and Marlon kissing and yells at Laurel, telling her how much she hates her and also saying Laurel’s not her real mum. Not surprisingly, this really upsets Laurel, but worse is to come. Marlon tries to calm Gabby down and she lashes out. Gabby then claims Marlon hit her!”

Uh-oh! What does Laurel do?
“She decides to tell Ashley what’s happened and that Gabby’s making things up. Laurel doesn’t want Gabby telling Ashley her own version. She’s also angry with Ashley, believing he’s trying to turn Gabby even more against Marlon than she is already.”

So Ashley talks to Gabby?
“Yes and she confesses she accused Marlon of hitting her because she wants to live with him. So Ashley makes arrangements for Gabby to move into the pub with him.”

How does that make Laurel feel?
“She’s very upset, but there’s not a lot she can do as Ashley is Gabby’s real father. Legally, Laurel is only Gabby’s stepmother. But as far Laurel as concerned, Gabby is her daughter. And I think Gabby would very happily accept Laurel as Mummy again if only Laurel and Ashley would get back together. But I very much doubt that is going to happen.”

We know that Bernice is returning. Will she go for custody of Gabby?
“OMG! That’s a million-dollar question. It’s real cat-among-the-pigeons stuff!”