EastEnders’ star Tanya Franks’ life away from the soap as Rainie Cross with her actor partner

Get the best celeb exclusives and video house tours to your inbox every evening with our daily newsletter

Tanya Franks has been popping up in Walford since 2010 as Lorraine "Rainie" Cross with her EastEnders character the sister of Tanya Branning, formerly played by Jo Joyner.

She was reintroduced as a soap regular in 2018 married to her former brother-in-law Max Branning, played by Jake Wood, and has caused quite a stir with her storylines ever since, also bedding Max's brother Jack Branning (Scott Maslen).

Fortunately for actress Tanya, she's accustomed to playing unruly characters onscreen having also starred in Channel 5's soap Family Affairs, and has had a lengthy carer in theatre.

But who is Tanya Franks away from Albert Square? Let's take a look at her life and career…


Get exclusive celebrity stories and fabulous photoshoots straight to your inbox with OK's daily newsletter . You can sign up at the top of the page.

Who is Tanya Franks' partner?

Tanya, who was born in 1967, has lives with her partner James Barriscale who most famously played Desk Sergeant John Swift in WPC 56.

James, who was born in 1969, has even had bit parts in EastEnders and The Bill – both of which his wife worked on.

He also works as a voice actor appearing in video game Assassin's Creed and has starred in 2019 blockbuster movie Terminator: Dark Fate, as well as The Alienist on Netflix.

Tanya and James are also founders of film and theatre production company Stock-pot Productions.

  • EastEnders’ Adam Woodyatt shows off weight loss after split from wife

  • Inside EastEnders' Jessica Plummer's life away from soap character Chantelle

What has Tanya Franks appeared in before?

If you were a fan of Channel 5's early noughties soap offering Family Affairs, you will recognise Tanya as Karen Ellis.

She had storylines including a cancer scare, infertility, surrogacy, and a child custody battle – much similar to her role as Rainie on EastEnders where she has been battling the Beale family for custody of Abi Branning.

Tanya has also appeared in police drama The Bill staying for over a year as DI Rowanne Morell, before moving on to make appearances in Holby City and Doctors.


The actress also played a promiscuous primary school teacher in BBC Three series Pulling before she first appeared in EastEnders in 2007.

In between her multiple stints on the BBC soap, Tanya also appeared in Skins, New Tricks and starred alongside Olivia Colman in Broadchurch.

  • Download OK! magazine's FREE app and get all the gossip straight to your phone

  • Sign up for the BEST celebrity house tours and BIGGEST exclusive interviews

Who does Tanya Franks play in EastEnders?

Tanya first turned up in EastEnders as Tanya Branning's drug addict sister Rainie back in 2007 for a week-long stint, before returning the following years in 2008, then 2010 and 2011.


She played a big part in the Who Killed Lucy Beale? storyline as it was revealed she was Ian Beale's mystery phone contact and had been blackmailing him, returning again in 2014 and for the conclusion in the following year.

Rainie was finally reintroduced as a regular character in 2018 after she was paid by Max to play his wife so he could get custody of Abi. She's since stirred up trouble between the Branning brothers in retaliation, as well as kidnapped Abi.

She then had a drug relapse and attacked Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth) and was sent to prison.

Before lockdown Rainie was set to try and rinse Max dry in their divorce following their sham wedding, so that she could have a big fancy wedding with her boyfriend Stuart Highway (Ricky Champ).

Source: Read Full Article