Reference > Erinsborough News > Goodbye Young Lovers!
Bill and Anne leave Neighbours and head off into the sunset. But will they live happily ever after?
There won’t be a dry eye in the house when Bill Kennedy and Anne Wilkinson, Ramsay Street’s popular young lovers, finally bow out of Neighbours this month. It’s only the soap’s fans who’ll be shedding tears though. There’s no tragedy in store for the Romeo and Juliet of Erinsborough. They leave on a happy note – falling into each other’s arms at a train station when Anne follows Bill to Queensland. The couple were separated when carpenter Bill was offered a longed-for apprenticeship in the distant state. But Anne just can’t live without him…
Anne Wilkinson and Bill Kennedy, played by Brooke Satchwell and Jesse Spencer, have kept Neighbours’ fans hooked with their rollercoaster romance over the past two years.
It took much soul searching before hunky Bill decided to pack up his chisels and head for Queensland, leaving Anne behind to finish her university art course. But Anne soon realises that she cannot bear life without Bill and decides to transfer her course to be near him. The couple have kept an on-off relationship ever since Anne moved to Ramsay Street in 1997 with her mother, Ruth and twin brother Lance.
Bill quickly fell for the pretty, blue-eyed brunette – but what looked like a match made in heaven had its share of strife. The first serious test came when Anne caught Bill kissing a girl he’d met at the swimming club. But far from floundering in the depths of despair, the relationship surfaced stronger than ever.
And their union was cemented when, on a camping trip, they ended up sharing more than a tent… This isn’t the first time Queensland has entered the equation, either – Anne had earlier been offered a college place there, but turned it down to stay near Bill.
The rollercoaster took another dive last year when Anne made the decision that they should break up. A dismayed Bill couldn’t deal with the split and, in a childish act that looked suspiciously like spite, he grabbed back all the love letters and photos that Anne had kept and burned them. Then he became obsessed with the fear that Anne would get together with her new artist friend Fanto. But romance between the two art students failed to ignite and, come millennium night, it was Bill who ended up in Anne’s arms.
Having won her back, it was hard for Bill to leave her behind in Erinsborough. So he’ll be delighted when she turns up out of the blue and announces that she’s transferred her university course – and is joining him for good. “It’s great news for Bill,” says 21-year-old actor Jesse Spencer. “I don’t think that he’d really be able to cope without Anne.”
And, although she’s looking forward to moving on too, 19-year-old Brooke says she’ll miss the show which provided her first acting job. “Neighbours has been the most amazing learning experience for me,” she says.
As the youngest of the Kennedy clan, Jesse admits that it’s time for a change. “I’d been in Neighbours for five years and I’d had enough,” he says. “It’s unlikely that I’ll be going back.”
So what next for the young stars? Already off-screen in Australia, Brooke is rumoured to be rehearsing for the part of Miranda in a Sydney production of The Tempest. Meanwhile, Jesse has scotched rumours that he is set to play Anakin Skywalker in the next Star Wars film.
“I’d heard that I was having talks with Steven Spielberg. Although I’d love to be in Star Wars, sadly it’s total rubbish,” he sighs. “As for the future – if it’s stuff I’m happy with, I’ll do it. And who knows where that may lead?”
This article originally appeared in Soaplife magazine, dated May 2000 and was written by Ellie Genower