As an Apprentice fan, I was delighted to read that two of my favourite contestants, Zoe Beresford and Glenn Ward had found love via the show.
So I was sad but not entirely surprised – after all relationships borne out of TV programmes, such as Katie Price and Peter Andre, rarely seem to survive – when Zoe contacted Featureworld this week to announce their split.
In fact, their secret relationship was the talk of BBC1’s The Apprentice. And when the BBC1 show finished Boardroom rivals came clean about their relationship.
Holding hands the couple said they were even considering marriage and kids. Zoe, 27, said: “I love him so much.’ Meanwhile, Glenn, 30, confessed: “We are crazy about each other.”
But now Zoe reveals their year-long romance over – and she’s heartbroken.
“I thought I’d found my Mr Right and saw our future together,” she says, ‘we were like soulmates. I felt I only had to look at Glenn to know what he was thinking and he said the same about me.
“Although neither of us won the Apprentice, it seemed as if fate had intervened and we were just meant to be together.
“We even talked about marriage. Glenn used to say to me it wasn’t a case of if but when. So I am just feeling devastated and so incredibly hurt it’s ended this way.”
Their split just last month follows rows between them.
Despite originally denying their romance by the time The Apprentice was finally aired in May last year they’d been dating for five months.
But due to contracts that forbid any contestant to contact one another until after the series is aired, they were forced to keep their relationship under wraps.
Zoe, who famously wrote a note on a laundry slip when Glenn was fired saying she was sorry to see him leave, says: “Although people say they can see we were attracted to one another on the show, I’d never thought of Glenn romantically. I was far too focused on just getting through the tasks.
“But last January, after filming had finished we met up at an unofficial reunion. There Glenn said he couldn’t get me out of his head and wanted a relationship. I was shocked because saw him just as a friend but over the next month we started chatting by text and phone. Finally we met for a drink and hit it off.”
Says Zoe: “It all felt so natural and relaxed. Glenn and I really seemed to be on the same wavelength. We grew so close. We shared the same sense of humour and even had our own special language with words that only we understood.”
Glenn, a design engineer from Hertford, regularly visited Zoe at her home in Sandbach, Cheshire.
She says: ‘I did everything for Glenn. If I made him a packed lunch, I’d even hide a special treat for him, such as a little chocolate for him to find.’
The pair also went on romantic holidays skiing in the Alps, to Majorca, Spain and on a weekend break to Brussels.
She says: ‘Glenn had never skied before and one day when he fell over, I just told him I loved him and he said the same to me.’
But in hindsight as they announced their relationship to the world last June, cracks were already appearing.
Says Zoe: “He’s more image conscious than me and we used to argue because he didn’t like me going out without make-up or heels.” The pressure to look good, she says, caused her to lose a stone and a half while they were dating.
Then during a row a week before Christmas Glenn said he no longer wanted to see Zoe.
“I was so upset especially when over Christmas and my birthday, which falls shortly after, he didn’t get in contact. We’d even planned a New Year party at my home and I was forced to cancel that.”
However, a few weeks later Glenn contacted Zoe saying he regretted breaking up and wanted to try again. But things didn’t get back to how they were and the couple continued to row.
“Then he dropped a bombshell – he said he’d never really fancied me anyway.’
Since then, Zoe, who is back in her old job as a national account manager in the soft drinks industry, says she has lost a further stone due to anxiety over the break-up.
Glenn says some of Zoe’s claims about his behaviour are untrue. In a statement he said, “Zoe and I were happy while together but unfortunately it was a relationship that came to a natural end in December last year.”