Remember them? Doncaster’s past stars of reality television

Robin Goforth & Noelie Klineberg.
Robin Goforth & Noelie Klineberg.
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American artist Andy Warhol predicted that ‘in the future, everyone would be world-famous for 15 minutes’.

And thanks to the rise in popularity of reality TV, it seems he may not have been far off the mark, particularly with people from Doncaster.

Strike: Liam Richards and Danny Ball

Strike: Liam Richards and Danny Ball

The latest borough resident enjoying their 15 minutes of fame is Chloe Wilburn, who is settling into the Big Brother house this week.

But she is far from the the first. From Wife Swap to The X Factor, Doncaster has churned out some memorable reality TV stars – some of whom, such as One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson, from Bessacarr, are still making a living from their brush with fame.

And one of Doncaster’s most memorable reality TV families had some wise words for Big Brother hopeful Chloe.

Double act 2 Grand made their mark on Britain’s Got Talent reaching the final in 2009.

Zi Khan, star of The Mole

Zi Khan, star of The Mole

Sallie Lax performed with her grandad John Neill – who sadly died after battling cancer last year – on the popular ITV show.

Susan Van Steen, Sallie’s mum, said her daughter was now pursuing a solo career.

She said: “Our experience of reality TV was fantastic, absolutely amazing.

“It was a lot of hard work and toing and froing, but we all have such good memories of it.

X Factor's 2 Grand-Sallie Lax and John Neill.

X Factor's 2 Grand-Sallie Lax and John Neill.

“If I was to give Chloe some reality TV advice, it would be just take it for what it is. Keep your feet on the ground and don’t get too caught up thinking it’s your five minutes of fame, just use the experience to further your career.

“Sallie has used her experience as a platform to launch her career and she’s now singing for a living and my dad had such a great time on the show, he said he felt like a teenager again.”

Chloe, aged 25, from Balby, was the first to arrive in the latest Big Brother house, walking down the stairs with greetings to Doncaster, Bentley, and her grandfather, who did not know she was taking part in the show.

Neighbours of the office administrator were stunned to find out Chloe was set for reality TV stardom.

Chloe Wilburn.

Chloe Wilburn.

Shirley Swift said: “We wish her all the best of luck. I didn’t even know she was going on the show. I don’t know her that well just to say hello too but it’s a bit of excitement for the street.”

And Merle Thompson said: “I’m really surprised. I didn’t know she was going on. I’m not really a Big Brother fan, but I do hope she does well.”

Remember these? Previous Doncaster reality television stars:

* Zi Khan was one of Doncaster’s first reality TV stars who featured on ‘The Mole’ in 2001. Players in The Mole had to work together to complete various physical and mental challenges to build up a cash prize for the winner. Series 1 took place in Jersey and France and was hosted by Glenn Hugill. The Doncaster man scooped £100,000 on the show.

* Arguably Doncaster’s most successful reality TV export is Louis Tomlinson, who finished third on the 2010 series of The X Factor as part of boyband One Direction. Since finding fame on the show the band’s achievements include five Brit Awards, four MTV Video Music Awards, 11 MTV Europe Music Awards, and 19 Teen Choice Awards.

* Robin and Noelie Goforth from Doncaster are no strangers to reality TV - the pair, who own Hatfield fisheries as well as a number of petrol stations, appeared on Britain’s Flashiest Families earlier this year and have previously enjoyed a brush with fame on Channel 4’s Wife Swap.

Louis Tomlinson

Louis Tomlinson

* 2 Grand reached the finals of Britain’s Got Talent in 2009. Doncaster duo John Neill and granddaughter Sallie Lax wowed TV judges on the hit show. Sallie is now juggling the demands of a solo career with her college work.

* Armthorpe’s Danny Ball found fame as part of the martial arts duo Strike and made it to the final of the ITV talent show back in 2008, alongside Liam Richards, from Sheffield. The duo made it to the finals, with more than 15 million people tuning in to watch their high-energy routines combining martial arts, acrobatics, gymnastics and dance, all choreographed to music.