Soap vixen Nicola Blackstock will be making a dramatic return to Emmerdale this autumn – only this time she’s a rich bitch.

Disgraced Nicola, played by actress Nicola Wheeler, left the Dales in a wave of controversy 18 months ago, after trying to seduce her half-brother’s boyfriend Ivan.

The storyline bagged actress Nicola the Soap Bitch Of The Year gong at the British Soap Awards in 2006.

Nicola Blackstock, who first arrived in Emmerdale with her dad Rodney in January 2001, will return to the soap this September – but under her new married name, De Souza, and with thousands of pounds in the bank.

Nicola immediately takes a shine to David Metcalfe and, true to form, does everything she can to get what she wants.

Nicola said: “I’m very excited to be back, it will be nice to see the changes to the character and catch up with what she’s been up to since we saw her last. It’s interesting to go back as the same character but with a different name and a much bigger bank balance to help her cause even more trouble!”

Kath Beedles, series producer, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Nicola back to the show. The villagers will get the shock of their lives when she makes her grand entrance later this year and can expect fireworks as Nicola vows to reclaim her status in the village.”