Emmerdale Alice and Sam Dingle

Exploring Alice Dingle’s tragic love story and legacy in Emmerdale

She married Sam Dingle and she's Samson's mum

Alice Dingle in Emmerdale is the much-missed late wife of Sam Dingle, and mum to his son Samson Dingle.

She and Sam weren’t married for long, but their romance changed poor Sam’s life forever.

So what was her tragic story?

Alice and Sam Dingle look upset and worried
Alice tragically died (Credit: ITV/Shutterstock)

Alice meets the Dingles

A bit of a social misfit, Alice Wilson had been living on her own since her father had died, and she’d been struggling to keep the family farm going.

Paddy Kirk visited to see Alice’s chickens and was horrified to see how Alice was living.

He and his wife, Emily, made friends with Alice and it was through them that she got to know and fall in love with Sam.

Alice and Sam Dingle exchange their vows
Alice and Sam’s wedding was moving (Credit: ITV/YouTube)

Romance with Sam

Alice and Sam hit it off, but still struggling with the farm, Alice made plans to move to Norfolk.

When she told Sam she was going, he was beside himself. He even thought about taking his own life, though Eric Pollard managed to talk him out of it.

Alice though, came to visit after she’d auctioned her farm, and the pair kissed. Alice asked him to go to Norfolk with her but Sam said no. He said he didn’t want to leave his family.

Zak, though, knew his son better than he knew himself. He talked him into going with Alice and the pair left together happily.

Alice Dingle in her sick bed
Alice started to feel ill when she was pregnant with Samson (Credit: ITV/YouTube)

Returning to Emmerdale

Alice followed Sam home to Emmerdale a few years later. It turned out she had found out she was pregnant and Sam had legged it!

Though the Dingles were cross with Sam, Alice understood he’d just had a wobble and the couple reunited. They decided to stay in Emmerdale so their baby could grow up with the Dingle family.

Alice Dingle’s cancer

During her pregnancy, Alice started feeling ill. She and Sam were devastated to discover she had cancer. The doctors advised her to terminate her pregnancy so she could start treatment but Alice refused.

She gave birth to Samson prematurely in January 2006, and started chemotherapy.

Though Alice faced her illness bravely, and even did a wing walk to raise money for charity, the treatment didn’t work.

Alice Dingle dying
Alice wanted to die on her own terms (Credit: ITV/YouTube)

Tying the knot

During Alice’s treatment, when Samson was still a small baby, she and Sam got married.

After the moving ceremony, Alice told Sam that she’d made the decision to stop chemotherapy.

Assisted death for Alice Dingle

Alice was determined not to lose control throughout her illness – she shaved her head before she lost her hair and she decided she wanted to die when she was ready.

She made the tough choice to stop her treatment and after several weeks of pain, she and Sam agreed she would take her own life.

So when the time was right, Alice said tearful goodbyes to her family and Sam gave her an overdose of morphine.

Alice Dingle dies in Sam's arms
Alice died in Sam’s arms, exactly as she’d wanted to (Credit: ITV/YouTube)

Who played Alice Dingle?

Alice was played by actress Ursula Holden Gill.

She’d had several television roles before she landed the part of Alice, including the school secretary Carol in Teachers.

After she left Emmerdale, she went back to university, studying teacher training.

Now, though she still acts – most recently appearing in crime dramas Vera, and In The Dark – she works as a storyteller and writer.

She works with children and adults, writing and telling stories based on fairy tales and folklore, as well as teaching.

Read more: Who is in the cast of Emmerdale 2022? Meet the full line-up

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Emmerdale usually airs weeknights at 7.30pm on ITV, with an hour-long episode on Thursdays.

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Kerry Barrett
Freelance Soap Writer