Lesley Dunlop: ‘Brenda wants to be Bob’s sixth wife’

Lesley Dunlop reveals to Soaplife how Brenda takes control of her illness and her life with two massive decisions – to shave her head and marry Bob in Emmerdale.

Why is Brenda in such a hurry to marry Bob?
“I think she realises what she has got and how lucky she is. She’s thinking of what little time she may or may not have left and she wants to be married to Bob, even if she is his sixth wife.”

Is she worried that Bob won’t want to be married to her after she shaves her head?
“She’s feeling very insecure and anxious – but she feels like that with her hair falling out. She stops staying at Bob’s house because she doesn’t want him to see the handfuls of hair on her pillow – or see her looking like she has got mange.”

So how does Bob react to bald Brenda?
“He’s wonderful. He tells Brenda it’s the person inside that he loves and it doesn’t matter if she has hair or not.”

You shave your hair off for real, don’t you?
“Yes. We had to do it in one take because Sian [Reese-Williams – Gennie] did it. It was very emotional – we were both sobbing.”

Brenda’s also upset when she finds out she can’t have her surprise wedding to Bob. What goes wrong?
“It’s something to do with the fact that both people have to sign the licence before you can have a wedding. I’m not really sure though, having never been married myself.”

Then Gennie saves the day with a really sweet idea…
“She tells Brenda about an ancient Pagan commitment ceremony called ‘handfasting’ [where a couple are joined in union by having their hands bound together with a cord or ribbon]. Brenda and Bob won’t be legally married, but she wants to do something that is spontaneous and that is an announcement of their love.”

Do you think Brenda and Bob are well suited?
“Yes, they’re both as bonkers as each other. They’re a great couple.”