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Coleen Nolan exposed Shane Richie affair thanks to The Chase's Bradley Walsh and tech blunder

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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
 2021-03-18
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Coleen Nolan is the latest celebrity to be given the Piers Morgan's Life Stories treatment, and will sit down with the recently departed Good Morning Britain host for an exciting tell-all tonight.

The Loose Women star will certainly have a lot to talk about - after all, she's led an action-packed life.

From finding fame with her sisters in The Nolans to winning CelebrityBig Brother and enduring two painful divorces, the 56-year-old star has tales to tell.

Over the years she's been open about her nine-year marriage to EastEnders actor Shane Richie, which ended in broken hearts after they both played away.

The pair first met in 1986 and planned to marry in a huge ceremony in 1990 but eloped to Florida at the last minute when their plans spiralled out of control.

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Coleen Nolan and Shane Richie eloped to Florida (Image: Rex)

They went on to have two sons - Jake, 28, and Shane Jr, 32, and had a blessing at a church when Coleen’s father fell ill a few years later.

Then in 1996, Shane moved to Manchester to play Danny Zuko in Grease, leaving Coleen and their two children down South.

And in an extract from her 2009 autobiography, Coleen said that was when she first had an inkling something was amiss.

Attending an industry party for one of Shane’s musicals, her spidey senses started tingling when she spotted an attractive brunette woman across the room.

“At the after-show party I can distinctly remember examining this one girl. There were loads of people there but she just stood out. She had really long dark hair and was wearing a skin-tight white dress,” recalled Coleen.

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Coleen started to worry that something was wrong when Shane moved to Manchester (Image: Ken McKay / Rex Features)

“Well, it must have been female intuition because that turned out to be the girl Shane had an affair with.”

In his own autobiography, Rags to Riches, Shane admitted cheating on Coleen with the dancer and actress in question, Claire Taylor.

He said: "I was lying so much that I couldn't remember which story I'd told to each of them. And I'd lie to cover up the lies."

A suspicious Coleen, 55, tried riffling through Shane's pockets to confirm her suspicions, but her search proved fruitless.

Then one day, the proof she needed landed in her lap when she allegedly realised Shane's phone calls were being recorded on a computer he had bought for her.

“Unbeknown to me, the computer Shane had bought me for Christmas was picking up all the calls to the house,” she claimed in her autobiography, Upfront and Personal.

“When I investigated further, while Shane was abroad, I worked out that there were 33 calls all recorded on the computer's hard drive. Curious, I scanned through them.”

One alleged call apparently began with Shane saying, "Hello princess."

"For a second I relaxed," Coleen continued. "Shane always called me that, so I just assumed he was talking to me. But his next sentence confused me."

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Shane and Coleen had sons Jake and Shane Jr together (Image: Scope Features)

According to Coleen, he asked: "'Are you in between shows? What time do you finish? I'll try and come round.'"

She continued: "What show? I hadn't been in a show for ages. I could only hear what Shane was saying but there was no way he was talking to me.

"'I really miss you,' he continued, in that affectionate tone I knew so well.

"Caught red-handed!"

The couple eventually split in 1999, and Coleen went on to marry musician Ray Fensome and have daughter Ciara, 19, but they divorced in 2018.

Shane married actress Christie Goddard in 2007 and they have three children - Mackenzie Blue, 14, Lolita Bell, 12, and Romani-Skye Angel Shelley, nine.

And in 2012, Coleen told the Daily Star how her divorce from Shane eventually brought her peace.

“I’m in a much happier place now than when I was married to Shane – I don’t have to worry about what he gets up to any more," she said.

For Shane's part, her told the Guardian there was 'no excuse' for his behaviour, especially as he was the host of wedding show, Love Me Do, which promoted monogramy.

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Shane and Coleen eventually split in 1999 (Image: Getty Images)

"What I did to Coleen was unforgivable and I could never apologise enough," he said.

"And I was pulling the wool over the public's eyes, so what do you think was going to happen?"

Shane also credited Coleen for keeping things amicable between them. Their divorce was settled out of court and Shane later attended the christening of her third child.

"I wish I could take credit for it, but Coleen instigated most of that. The only people who lost out were the lawyers. They were gutted," he said.

However, the betrayal wasn't the first within the marriage - Coleen also admitted that at one point, she played away too.

After the birth of their second son, Jake Roche, Coleen said she felt 'unattractive and non-existant' and when Shane started on Grease in 1993, she went to Weymouth with the Nolan Sisters for the summer season.

There, she met a keyboard player who made no secret of his interest in her.

One day back at the townhouse some of the musicians were renting, the mystery man leaned over and kissed Coleen over a cup of tea.

"As I kissed my musician, it was like a sexual awakening," she wrote in her autobiography.

"Adrenalin was pumping through my body. I knew what I was doing was terribly wrong, but I was literally shaking with exhileration. 'I am still attractive', I thought to myself.

But the guilt was all-consuming, with Coleen describing it as "one of the most horrendous times of my life."

She confided in good friend Bradley Walsh, who she said hinted that she wasn't the only one up to no good.

According to Coleen, The Chase star - who once dated her sister Bernie - said: “I’m not being funny, Coleen. I get on great with Shane, but you don’t need to feel as guilty as you do. He’s not so innocent either."

The affair lasted five weeks and ended when the show did. Driving back home, she realised she was still in love with Shane and wanted to make a go of their marriage.

*Piers Morgan's Life Stories airs tonight at 9pm on ITV

*Coleen Nolan's Upfront and Personal: The Autobiography is available from online book stores.

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