Congratulations to soap star Nicola Wheeler, who secretly gave birth to her first child, a boy, on Friday, March 13.

The happy news was announced on Emmerdale’s twitter account.

Nicola only confirmed in February that she was pregnant.

Her character, Nicola King, was recently seen on screen, making a tearful departure to Dubai, where she will be working for six months, while her husband Jimmy (Nick Miles) and daughter Angelica remain in Emmerdale.

Nicola W has confirmed that she will return to Emmerdale later this year, after her maternity leave.

Emmerdale, ITV.