A divorced couple stun their new partners on tonight’s First Dates — when they reveal midway through dinner that their ex-spouse is sat at the next table.
In a first for the show, Geordies Mandy and Stuart arrive together at the Channel 4 restaurant to give each other moral support as they both try to find love with someone else.
But their dates are left shocked in the show’s most awkward moment ever when the ex-husband and wife drop the bombshell that they used to be a couple.
The pair, who split amicably nine years ago after a decade married and have a son together, insist they are “absolutely just mates”.
But it leaves Stuart’s date Claire “stressful” for the rest of the date and Mandy’s beau Adam downing his glass of wine in shock.
And it’s not just them, as Stuart, who says his ex was the one who called time on their marriage, looks on uncomfortably from the bar as Mandy and Adam giggle over dinner and chat about oysters being an aphrodisiac.
Stuart, 51, reveals the staggering news when Claire, 43, from Gateshead, asks about his past relationships.
“You’re going to die when I tell you. You know my ex-wife? That’s her there,” Stuart says, pointing to the next table.
Claire replies: “Are you joking me? Are you having a laugh? Please tell me you’re joking.”
After he assures her he isn’t, she says: “That doesn’t make sense. Really? How does that work?”
Then Mandy, 44, confesses to 48-year-old Adam, from Durham, that Stuart on the next table is her ex.
Adam exclaims: “No way! That is quite a shock,” before jokingly asking her former husband: “Do you want to swap seats?”
Mandy says: “I’m just getting this out there now. I know this is hard for you but people who know us really well know there’s nothing weird about it. We are absolutely just mates.
“We’re quite unusual for ex-husband and wife. We got divorced on the internet for 30 quid.
“At the end of the day he’s my son’s dad, so he’s not going away.”
A stunned Adam replies: “No, he’s not! He’s right there! This is the weirdest date I’ve ever been on in my life.”
Stuart says of Mandy: “She’s got her life, I’ve got my life. It’s very amicable. We’re good friends.”
Afterwards, Adam admits: “There wasn’t much flirting going on because I felt a little awkward.
“Her ex-husband was sitting about seven feet away from me, so I didn’t think it was appropriate to flirt with her.”
And Claire says: “It was an unusual situation and it was quite stressful having the ex-wife sat on the other table. That was very off-putting.
“I felt like she was looking me up and down, thinking ‘hmmm…'”
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Before the dates, Stuart says: “Mandy will tell me what has happened on a date, even going as far as telling me if anything has happened between the sheets!
“If there are any problems, if there’s anything anybody wants to talk about, we’re there for each other.”
One of the couples decides to meet again romantically, although you’ll have to tune in to the first episode of the new series to find out who.
* First Dates starts on Channel 4 at 10pm tonight.