Jeremy Edwards regrets turning down £2 million for photos of his relationship with Rachel Stevens.

Jeremy Edwards

Jeremy Edwards

The former 'Hollyoaks' actor got engaged to marry the S Club 7 singer in 2002 but the pair split the following year because of the pressures of how much scrutiny they were under and though the 50-year-old star admitted the financial package they were offered to photograph the milestones of their future together was "ridiculous", he wishes they'd taken the money because it would have improved his life.

He said: “Rachel knows this. The attention was the destruction of our relationship, both Rachel and I have agreed that the pressure was so much when we got engaged.

“We could not go anywhere. I kid you not, we'd go on a holiday, and there would be helicopter circling with people trying to take photos of us by the pool.

“We were offered stupid amounts of money, £2million to sell our wedding photos, honeymoon photos and our first born, and I turned it down. I just thought, 'This is ridiculous'.

“I wish I'd done it. I could've made a s***load of money and had a bit more privacy. I'd be living in The Bahamas or something.”

Despite their split, Jeremy - who is expecting his second while with wife Lydia Metz - and Rachel are still friends and he knows her husband, Alex Bourne, too.

He told the 'Soap From the Box' podcast: “When we broke up, we respected and we still loved each other. It just wasn't going to work. Right. And that's a nice thing.

“There was no one else involved. So it was a mature thing to do.

“I see her around and we're still friends, it's nice. I know Alex and she's met Lydia and all the rest of it. So it's not a big deal.”

Meanwhile, Jeremy revealed he was offered one of 'Hollyoaks' most iconic plots - the 2000 rape of Gary Lucy's character Luke Morgan - in a bid to tempt him from leaving his role as Kurt Benson but turned it down because he "didn't feel comfortable" and was unsure he could "do justice" to the hard-hitting plot.

He said: “I was very under confident. They offered me the male rape storyline, which Gary Lucy did brilliantly, but they offered that to me and I turned it down because I genuinely didn't know I could do it justice.

“At that time I was just like, “Oh, I don't know”. I didn't feel comfortable with it. I found it quite hard. I was sort of leaving and just riding off into the sunset and I just kind of wanted to keep it like that.

“But they wanted to tempt me with it, basically wanting me to stay and I didn't want to.”