Homes Under the Hammer and A Place in the Sun star's 'secret' WAG life with famous footballer and EastEnders link

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Lucy Alexander, best known as the original co-host of BBC's Homes Under the Hammer, was a familiar face to viewers since the show's launch in 2003, alongside Martin Roberts. Starting her career on Channel 5's children's television, she quickly became a household name through the property programme.

In 2016, Lucy left Homes Under the Hammer to pursue other opportunities, including stints on A Place In The Sun and Channel 4's Best Of Both Worlds, filling in for Kirstie Allsopp as a housing guru. Now 54, Lucy occasionally returns to Homes Under the Hammer to lend her expertise, but she took time off to focus on her family, a period marked by the loss of her mother.

The pandemic hit her career hard, with Lucy revealing to "Then it was Covid, then we didn't get recommissioned, and then I was out of a job. I didn't have any work. It wasn't the greatest of times for me. I still had a mortgage to pay and a family to feed," reports the Mirror. This year, however, brought good news as Lucy secured a permanent role presenting A Place In The Sun.

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Outside of her professional life she is married to former Premier League footballer Stewart Castledine, whom she met via a friend. They wed in 2000 and have two children: Leo, a budding footballer like his dad, and Kitty, who plays Penny Branning on EastEnders.

In 2016 her personal and professional lives merged when she hosted a documentary series that hit close to home. She fronted the first episode of the BBC's five-part series Matron, Medicine and Me: 70 Years of the NHS which delved into the UK's medical care for disabled patients.

The programme allowed her to draw on her own family's experiences, as it covered her daughter's battle with transverse myelitisa rare inflammatory disease causing injury to the spinal cord. Kitty faced a life-changing challenge in 2012 when a virus triggered her immune system to attack her spinal cord, resulting in paralysis and the need for a wheelchair.

Lucy opened up about the profound impact her daughter's condition had on their lives during an appearance on the podcast, White Wine Question Time in 2019. She reflected: "It's been the making of us as a family and of her. It's really phenomenal how I've watched a kid - she's a young woman now - change her life and turn it around." She also shared the emotional toll it took on her, saying, "Still every day it takes my breath away to see her in a wheelchair wheeling up to me. It's tough, it's b****y tough." For the latest TV & Showbiz news, sign up to our newsletter.