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Lady Tara Thornfield is a fictional character and recurring anti-villain of the ITV British soap opera Emmerdale.

The character was portrayed by Anna Breckon.


Lady Tara first came to the village in 1997 along with her husband Lord Alex Oakwell. They were the owners of Oakwell Farm Estate and sought a business partnership with fellow businesswoman Kim Tate and her fiance Steve Marchant. This went well until the night of Kim and Steve's engagement party when Alex, after cheating on his wife with Kim, ended up causing the death of attendent Linda Fowler to cover-up his drug addiction and illict activities. Consequently, Tara was suspected in albetting in her husband's criminal activities by the time they divorced.

In 1998, Tara started a business partnership with Kim and Steve that later grew problematic due to the latter duo having money problems. It was then Kim's stepson and archenemy, Chris Tate, saw an opportunity to convince Tara to let him become the new MD of Home Farm. Tara agreed, but not after initially refusing to simply cause trouble among the Tate family. That same year, she remarried to an entreprenur named Lord Thornfield; they seperated off-screen at some point in 1999.

In 2000, Tara returned to recoup her business partnership with Chris and his sister Zoe when they needed a backup plan to keep their business running afloat - after Chris faced investigation for his company's involvement in a bus crash that killed truck driver Pete Collins and local resident Butch Dingle along with two other people. The follow-up of Chris' exoneration from prosecution saw Tara being romantically involved with his business partner Sean Reynolds, but soon she began to seduce Sean's son Marc despite their age differences. Sean confronted Tara and warned her to stay away from his son, but she ignored him and continued to pester around Marc along with his sister Ollie.

In 2001, Tara's seduction of Marc prompted his mother and Sean's wife Angie - a policewoman - to confront her at The Woolpack public house; Angie had long waited to confront Tara for having an affair with Sean and trying to woo over the children without their consent. An argument ensued until Tara provoked Angie into punching her in front of everyone. Tara thereupon called the police on Angie, but everyone defended her and Tara was left humiliated; her story was later retracted by local hardman Cain Dingle during his vengeful campaign against the Reynolds over Butch's death. By the time Angie's affair with Cain became public knowledge, Sean divorced his wife and proceeded to reconcile with Tara; the two later departed the village in 2002.

In 2007, Tara briefly reappeared to attend the funeral of Sean's late father Len.


  • She had appeared in a total of 216 appearences during her time on the show.