Emmerdale star shares sporting dreams

Emmerdale actor Matthew Wolfenden has revealed that he could have been an Olympic athlete if things had turned out differently.

Matthew spends his time getting soap fans hot under the collar as David Metcalfe in the popular ITV show these days, but the actor says his first love was on the sporting stage – in gymnastics.

“I started when I was five or six and at 14 I was offered a place in the British team,” he said. “But at 16, I injured my lower back and had to quit.”

“It was gutting to be at such a high level and be training for the Olympics and for something like that to happen. But I wouldn’t be here now talking to you if it hadn’t.

“If and when I ever have children, I’d encourage them to take up gymnastics. It’s a great technique and a great skill to have because you’re so disciplined. You have to be. I was training before and after school.”

He adds: “I think some of the really young lads I used to train with are going to the Olympics this time.”

Yorkshire-born Matthew turned to dancing after his injury, training in Leeds, before moving down to London, where he lived for five years.

When Emmerdale came up he relocated to Leeds again, but says: “London is always a place I come back to.”

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