Check out how the Hollyoaks gang from two decades ago have changed

Yasmin Bannerman was 22 when she stepped on to the set of Hollyoaks in 1995 playing Maddie Parker, the streetwise and sassy siren who ran Parker’s restaurant. Her stint in the soap was brief and after two years the character of Maddie left when she went to live with her mum. Yasmin, 42, has gone on to have small parts in Doctor Who, Casualty and Torchwood since leaving the programme.

Brett O’Brien only appeared in the soap for a year as part of the ‘original magnificent seven’. Since leaving she has appeared in Wire in the Blood and The Fungus of Bogeyman.

Despite brief stints on rival soaps such as EastEnders, actor Nick Pickard is the ONLY remaining cast member from the original Hollyoaks gang. His character Anthony ‘Tony’ Hutchinson has been through two affairs, suffered the loss of his daughter and beat testicular cancer!

The death of Natasha Andersen, played by Shebah Ronay, was the first time Hollyoaks made waves with their storylines. The character passing away in 1996, a result of drugs, was front page news and the soap was finally seen to be engaging with gritty plots. Since the leaving in 1996, Shebah has gone on to marry artist Jonathan Yeo and the couple have two children together. She has not worked as an actress since.


Will Mellor first came to our attention in 1990, when he played Ben Rowlingson in the children’s programme Children’s Ward. In 1995, he joined the cast of Hollyoaks and playing James ‘Jambo’ Bolton until 1998. As well as appearing as Gaz in Two Pints of Larger and a Packet of Crisps. Will also released a cover of Leo Sayer‘s When I Need You, which reached no.5 in the Singles Chart…who knew?

In her two short years on the soap, the character of Dawn Cunnigham – played by Lisa Williamson – managed to have an affair with her best friend’s dad, fall pregnant and put her daughter up for adoption all by the age of 16! Sadly the character of Dawn passed away from Leukemia in 1997. Lisa went on to star in KFC adverts and vitamin commercials but is still best known for her stint in the soap.

Motorbike-and-music-loving Kurt Benson was played by Jeremy Edwards from 1995 to 1999. Jeremy went on to act in Holby City from 1999 to 2003. He got engaged to Rachel Stevens in 2002 but they broke up in 2003. In 2005, he took part in the third series of Celebrity Big Brother, finishing in fourth place, behind Brigitte Nielsen, Kenzie from Blazin’ Squad, and the winner, Bez. In 2011 he was spotted working as a builder’s labourer to earn extra money. Awks!

Benjamin Potter