EastEnders star Sid Owen said he is "over the moon" as he prepares to become a father for the first time, at the age of 49.
The actor told the Sunday Mirror that his partner Victoria Shores is pregnant — and they're also planning for their wedding after he popped the question in August.
Owen originally met Shores at a party thrown by Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood in 1998 and they rekindled their relationship a year ago after connecting on Facebook.
"I never ever dreamt I would have kids. The older you get the more distant that idea seems," said Owen.
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He added: "You give up hope sometimes, so it is a miracle it has happened.
"We’d spoken about it when we talked about marriage but I just didn’t think it was going to happen. I was completely shocked and over the moon.”
Owen said he "didn't have the confidence" for romance before reconnecting with Shores, having been left with a broken jaw after being hit in the face with a golf ball.
He required £10,000 of reconstructive surgery after the freak accident, which took place in January 2020.
"I was a little bit messed up but luckily I snapped out of it when I met Vic," said the star.
"For the first time in my life I felt someone was not with me for that shallowness or fame or whatever, she just accepts me for me.”
Owen said his relationship with Shores would "never have lasted" the first time around, as Owen was at the height of his EastEnders fame.
He said: "I suppose it was hard to hold a relationship at that time, I was young and on TV.
“I had a few short-term relationships, nothing serious really. After my last relationship I thought I was going to be a bachelor for life.”
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The star revealed that he and Shores know the sex of their baby, but are keeping it secret until she gives birth in January.
Shores has two other children from a previous relationship.
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