They played husband and wife in BBC sitcom Outnumbered – and now actor Hugh Dennis has revealed that he is in a real life relationship with his co-star Claire Skinner.
The 56-year-old admitted that he and his former on-screen wife have been dating for more than a year after they both split up with their previous partners.
‘I am very, very happy, we are so very happy,’ Hugh told the Mail on Sunday. ‘It’s nice and yes, it’s so lovely.’
The actors chose only to tell their families and a few close friends and colleagues about their relationship.
In recent months Hugh and Claire had been spotted out together several times but it was assumed they were out as friends.
Fans of the show were delighted in hearing the news of the real-life couple, with one tweeting: ‘Hugh Dennis and Claire Skinner are a real couple now and this is the best news I’ve heard all day.’
Another said: ‘As if these two have got together in real life! Brilliant.’
A third added: ‘okay sue and Pete from outnumbered are dating in real life and it may be the best news I hear all year’.
And a fourth said: ‘Absolutely LOVE that Hugh Dennis and Claire Skinner (the parents from Outnumbered) are together in real life now. How cute is that?! Proper made me smile.’
Hugh had been married to second wife, Kate Abbot-Anderson, for 19 years before they separated in 2016. They share two children, son Freddie, 21, and daughter Meg, 19.
Claire split from her former husband and the father of her two children, director Charles Palmer, in 2015.
The former couple were married for 16 years and share two sons, William, 19, and Henry, 16.
Hugh and Claire played parents to three precocious young children, Jake, Ben and Karen, played by Tyger Drew-Honey, Daniel Roche and Ramona Marquez, in the popular sitcom, which aired on BBC One for five series between 2007 and 2014.
It last appeared with a one-off Christmas special in 2016.