Emmerdale Leah Bracknell widower Jez Hughes

Leah Bracknell: widower Jez Hughes watching her old Emmerdale episodes a year after her death

Leah died a year ago

The widower of Leah Bracknell, Jez Hughes, has explained why he watches her old Emmerdale episodes.

Last year Leah, who played Zoe Tate in Emmerdale from 1989 until 2005, died three years after being diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer.

Widower of Leah Bracknell Jez Hughes watched old Emmerdale episodes to feel connected to that part of her life (Credit: ITV)

Why was the widower of Leah Bracknell on Loose Women?

Today (Tuesday, September 22) Leah’s husband Jez appeared on Loose Women to talk about Leah.

And during his interview he explained why he watched her old episodes of Emmerdale, even though he didn’t know her back then.

Jez explained: “It helps me connect, yeah. I mean that’s before I knew her but obviously it meant so much to her and I heard so much about that period of her life. Yes it connects me to her spirit.

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“When cancer comes into people’s lives it can become so dominant and everything becomes about the cancer.

“But actually we had a long relationship before cancer and she had a long life that was before cancer.

“So it feels really important to connect to that part of her, that kind of youthful, outward looking and just for my own sense and yeah.

“There’s moments if it’s an emotional scene in the programme… I know those emotions, I know her face in that place and that touches something deep inside of me and it reminds me.”

Emmerdale: Leah Bracknell book

Jez also hopes to keep Leah’s legacy alive by publishing a book she started about her diagnosis.

Leah died in September last year and the news was announced by her manager in a statement.

Lead died in September 2019 (Credit: Shutterstock/ITV)

Earlier this year, Jez also revealed that Ricky Gervais Netflix series, After Life, has also helped him cope with the loss of his wife.

The series centres around a middle-aged man trying to cope with his wife’s death.

Back in April, it was reported that the actress had left £280,000 fortune to her husband and daughters.

Emmerdale: Zoe Tate

Leah played Zoe from 1989 until 2005 (Credit: Shutterstock/ITV)

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Zoe was a memorable character in Emmerdale and was one of the show’s first central lesbian character.

She had an explosive departure in 2005 when her Home Farm estate manager Chris Reenie tampered with a gas pipe.

He set a timer so the house exploded when the King family, who conned Zoe out of the property, arrived.

Emmerdale airs Monday to Friday at 7pm with an extra episode on Thursday at 8pm.

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