To mark Hollyoaks’ 25th Birthday, a series of new images have been released featuring artistes including Jennifer Metcalfe and longest-serving cast member, Nick Pickard.
More images will be released throughout the week, featuring Jorgie Porter, Kieron Richardson, Jamie Lomas and Nikki Sanderson among others.
The show launched in 1995, devised by Grange Hill and Brookside creative Phil Redmond as a teen-aimed soap opera for a Channel 4 teatime slot.
Since then the show has transformed itself into a serious competitor in the serial dramas having won in recent times Best Soap at the 2019 British Soap Awards and the 2020 Broadcast Awards.
On 23rd October the first episode was watched by 2.9 million homes, the show opened with scenes that encapsulated the lives of the seven youngsters in Chester. The show opened to four teenagers scrambling out of a car before it exploded into a ball of flames – a sign of the action, drama and spectacles that would follow in the next two and a half decades.
As the episode rolled on, the audience pieced the characters and their stories together: Kurt’s kid brother Ollie was exposed as the ‘thief’ who stole his car; Jambo (Will Mellor) climbed through Kurt’s bedroom window marking his now-trademark move.
The first instalment closed with Kurt’s advances towards Natasha rejected not once, but twice… he finally got the message when her Alsatian dog leapt towards him. Nick Pickard (Tony) remains the only remaining cast member from this first episode, although Jeremy Edwards (Kurt) returned in 2013 for Hollyoaks Later and is due to reprise his role this anniversary.
Hollyoaks was originally on once a week until 1996 when this was doubled to two episodes. In 2001 the soap was being beamed into living rooms four times a week, which went up to five episodes in 2003. E4 episodes, which gave viewers a ‘first-look’ at the next night’s Ch4 edition, began in 2001.
Hollyoaks’ anniversary week begins on October 19th.