Emmerdale’s unlikely lothario Bob Hope has his sights set on Wendy Posner but a misplaced letter causing heartache. Actor Tony Audenshaw reveals all…

Wed 3 June 2020: Wendy attempts to talk to Bob Hope about his feelings for her, but Bob (thinking Wendy has feelings for Rishi) denies he has them anymore.

There’s not many men in Emmerdale that have been as unlucky in love as Bob Hope (ok maybe Marlon Dingle) but he’s still a hopeful romantic and has had his sights set on Wendy Posner since she arrived in the village. Actor Tony Audenshaw explains why Bob keeps getting it so wrong time after time…

Can you sum up what it is about Wendy that has drawn Bob to her?
Firstly, she lives right next door, ideal! He felt for her when she first moved in and was being victimised by Aaron Dingle (Danny Miller) and then bonded more when he shared that they had both lost children. She’s nice company to be around, capable, strong, self-sufficient, is very attractive and best of all…single.

Bob has quite a colourful history when it comes to women, and he seems to fall in and out of love very quickly. But Wendy really needs some stability after everything she has been through. Does Bob get this, and do you think he is up to the job of being the mature, sensible partner that she needs?
Bob has calmed down a lot over the years and learned a lesson from his affair with Laurel Thomas (Charlotte Bellamy). He was grateful for the support of the village when he became homeless and appreciates the support Brenda Hope (Lesley Dunlop) has given him, when she had no need to. I‘d say he’s grown up a bit.

Wendy has written a letter to Bob, outlining her feelings. Can you explain how it ends up in Rishi Sharma’s hands?
Wendy works at the surgery with Manpreet Sharma (Rebecca Sarker) and confides her feelings about Bob to her. Manpreet becomes distracted when she is putting the love letter in Bob’s middle-aged men health-check envelope and puts it in her husband Rishi’s instead. Ouch!

Mon 1 June 2020: Rishi Sharma shows Wendy’s love letter to Bob Hope, who can’t help but be shocked by what he reads.

Rishi shows Bob the letter – what does it say, and how does Bob feel to think that Wendy has fallen for Rishi?
It’s a lovely letter about harbouring feelings for someone and politely wondering if the other person feels the same way. He’s feels foolish that he thought he had a chance and is hurt and a bit jealous that it’s one of his mates she’s fallen for. The fact she’d rather see a married man than him stings too.

Wendy approaches Bob, having not had a response from the letter. What does she say to him, and what is Bob’s response?
She asks if he has seen the letter and what he thinks about its contents. He can’t believe she is being so brazen and blinkered to how he might feel when he has made it obvious, in the past, he’d like to take things further. He’s also had first-hand experience of how destructive an affair can be and is amazed she is being so flippant about the consequences of a relationship with Rishi, a married man.

Does he not notice that she is upset?
He just doesn’t want to know. He’s reeling from the fact he appears to have misjudged her so much. How could he have got it so wrong?

Is there any hope for them after this misunderstanding?
It’s a bit like the Celebrity Big Brother ‘wrong David’ episode, a real comedy of errors.  Maybe once the dust has settled they might find the truth? I think they’ll need an intervention from someone though.

Wed 3 June 2020: Devastated Wendy bites back tears. Has Bob ruined his chances with his harsh words?

Do you think they would make a good couple? Are they a good match?
Yes, I think so, it appears Wendy has been put off seeing anyone by a bad relationship.  Although Bob may be an idiot at times, he’s not a bad person and tends to treat people with kindness and compassion. He also loves being in a partnership and is clearly a randy old goat.

What do you think he would bring into her life, and vice versa?
I think he’d help her find a path through her grief and the awful situation of trusting and defending your child, protesting their innocence (as most parents would) and then finding out they were guilty. Doubly difficult with such an awful crime and no chance to discuss it with them to get closure. I think she’ll bring him company, a few laughs and a new appreciation of large dogs.

How are you spending your time in lockdown? Have you been doing lots of running?
Some running, not as much as normal obviously. I live in a semi-rural area so have a lot of quiet lanes nearby. I’ve been cycling on a turbo trainer at home, half training for Ride London which a team from work had hoped to be doing for Pancreatic Cancer UK but has sadly now been canceled.

Have you taken up any new hobbies?
Apart from baking bread, growing a beard and boozing more than usual, I’ve made a series of 40 plus short videos in the shed, featuring a pipe smoking chap talking about unusual and mundane objects. I shot and edited them on my phone and put them out on my twitter account @TonysTrials and have created a youtube channel called “In The Shed”.

It’s been a godsend as the writing and researching have kept me busy and I’ve learned a lot. I also helped set up a virtual version of our local quiz and did a song for one of the Woolpack Sessions. I’m a bit of a club turn compared with the likes of Bradley (Johnson), Isobel (Steele) and Olivia (Bromley), who are proper musicians, but it was enjoyable to put together as my kids are both musos and it’s always nice to work with them.