EastEnder actress Rita Simons has said she could never allow her alter ego Roxy Mitchell to betray her sister Ronnie by stealing her husband.

Speaking to Inside Soap magazine, Rita said that while Roxy may re-ignite her affair with Jack Branning, played by Scott Maslen, she has to first believe that her screen sister has moved on.

“Ronnie has filed for divorce from Jack, so I have to believe that she doesn’t love him any more,” Rita explained. “If I didn’t think that, I wouldn’t be able to play out the storyline.

“It’s Jack who persuades Roxy to stay and I’m sure that she has a few feelings of guilt. But if I didn’t absolutely believe Ronnie was over Jack, I’d hate my own character.”

The pair are also set to become entangled in a bitter custody battle over baby Amy. However Rita added that she thinks they could actually make things work as a family if the circumstances were different.

“I think Jack and Roxy would secretly both like to have a nice little nuclear family,” the actress admitted. “I know it sounds weird but Roxy is actually quite fond of Jack.

“They have a lot of history together, and she doesn’t hate him – I think she pities him more than anything.

“Maybe if their feuding families could stay out of their lives, they might stand a good chance!”