Warning: this article contains discussion of domestic abuse that some readers might find upsetting.


Emmerdale is set to explore Belle (played by Eden Taylor-Draper) and Tom King's (James Chase) dark marriage in upcoming scenes.

The pair have only just got married, but it's been clear to see that Tom has an abusive side to him - and it's set to get worse as he aims to control his wife.

Belle will hide her abuse from her friends and family, meaning she will be isolated in her despair.

And just how far will Tom go to establish full control of his wife?

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Emmerdale producer Laura Shaw said of the storyline: "Soaps are in the extraordinary position of being able to highlight what happens behind the public face of an abusive relationship, over a longer period of time.

"The audience knows these characters so well, sometimes as well as they might know their own friends and family, and they care deeply about them.

"As harrowing as it can be to watch this type of storyline play out, it’s imperative that we use our platform to shine a light on domestic abuse, and help give a voice to people who have so often been silenced."

Emmerdale has been working with outside partners, like New Beginnings Peer Support and Refuge, to research the issue, and have discovered the rise of tech abuse (using trackers/hidden cameras) as a means of control, which Tom will be seen to use on Belle.

Tom and Belle face each other at the alter in Emmerdale
Belle and Tom previously got married. ITV

Emma Pickering, head of technology-facilitated abuse and economic empowerment at Refuge, said: "Refuge is pleased to have had the opportunity to work with the writers and producers of Emmerdale, to develop the storyline between Tom and Belle and show viewers the sad realities of domestic abuse.

"The show will be exploring the multi-faceted and complex nature of domestic abuse, with various manifestations of abuse, including coercive control, emotional abuse, physical abuse and technology-facilitated abuse, all set to be displayed by Tom over the coming weeks.

"The show will also highlight how abuse escalates over time, as well as some of the common tactics used by perpetrators such as isolation from family and friends, love bombing and manipulation.

"Domestic abuse is sadly all too common, with one in four women experiencing some form of abuse in their lifetime.

"It is important shows like Emmerdale explore these types of storylines, and work with experts such as ourselves when developing these on-screen portrayals so viewers can be informed about domestic abuse and how it presents and learn to recognise signs of abuse in the real world."

Taylor-Draper added: "When we first heard from the producers the way the Tom and Belle relationship story was going to go, we were fully aware of the responsibility that would bring. But it is an important story to tell.

"Soaps offer the viewer a glimpse of life behind closed doors and reveal what people present to the world isn't always a truth. The sad reality is that behaviour like this in a relationship is all too prevalent.

"I hope we do this story justice. And if people are in a situation like this, they should definitely get help."

You can access free and confidential support from Refuge’s 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247 and digital support via live chat Monday-Friday 3-10pm via nationaldahelpline.org.uk. You can also visit the the tech safety website refugetechsafety.org to learn more about technology-facilitated abuse.

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Emmerdale airs on weekdays at 7:30pm on ITV1 and ITVX. If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV Guide and Streaming Guide or visit our Soaps hub.


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