Last year Sam Aston and his wife Briony were excitedly telling us they were expecting a baby girl and couldn’t wait to add another addition to their family.
Fast-forward six months and the Coronation Street actor and yoga teacher have introduced their new bundle of joy to OK! VIP in an exclusive shoot alongside their 22 month old son Sonny, and they’ve revealed everything from her floral name to her arrival. Sign up or login below to see all the exclusive family photographs and read their incredible birth story.
Are you an OK! VIP? If not, why not? It’s free and gives you backstage access to stories like this, exclusive home tours, special discounts and so much more! All you need to do is pop your email address below! Ps if you’re already seeing this article in full, congrats – you’re already on our guest list!
When we arrive to meet actor Sam Aston and his wife Briony, it isn’t just the couple who are smitten with their newborn daughter.
The couple’s 22 month old son Sonny is super excited with the family’s new addition and can’t wait to introduce us. As he points to his baby sister, Sonny tells us her name – Daisy.
“We’ve always liked it,” says Sam. “It was one of the only names we both agreed on.” Briony adds, “Once we knew we were having a girl we kept going back to it, so then halfway through the pregnancy we were like, ‘Daisy it is!’ and I bought all the personalized stuff.”
She continues, “She’s Daisy Josephine. Josephine is a nod to Sam’s brother Joe and my grandad Joe. Daisy is also the French name for Marguerite and my mum’s mum is called Margaret, so it was a way to have both grandparents in there.”
And we can tell straight away the couple are besotted with little Daisy.
“She’s a dream,” smiles Briony of their latest addition, who arrived nine days late on 10 May at 11:59pm following a three hour water birth in the living room of their family home in Lancashire.
“It was euphoric,” yoga teacher Briony tells us of the birth. “It was exactly what I wanted. I would do that every day of my life if I could! Usually, a few days after giving birth your hormones level out and you start feeling the baby blues, but this time I still feel like I’m on a high.”
“It was amazing,” adds Sam, who has played Chesney Brown on the cobbles since 2003. “We’re very lucky. It all happened so fast. We’d just had some tea and then I put the telly on to watch some football, but then all of a sudden I heard Briony upstairs…”
“I was mooing!” she adds with a laugh. “I was in the shower but I had to get out as the birthing pool was filling up so slowly. Sam and my dad, who came to watch Sonny, were just running around with kettles filling up the pool.”
“The water pressure in our house isn’t the best!” laughs Sam. “I could tell Briony’s contractions were coming thick and fast, so I was called the midwife and was like, ‘Quick you need to get here now!”‘
Briony continues: “And Meg my doula was lovely. She pressed my back and applied pressure where it was needed and she was really positive.
“Her doing that freed up time for Sam to just be with me. The midwife actually just sat hiding behind the birthing pool because I didn’t really want anyone around, but it was nice she was there just in case. It was so undisturbed and natural.”
“It was basically pitch black in the room,” adds Sam. “Briony also made a playlist but when I put it on I was told to f*****g turn it off!” he laughs.
“I did want all twinkly lights and music, but then when it got to it I just wanted it to be really silent and I just had a few candles on,” explains Briony, who is the co-owner of The Happy Baby Studio.
“I just wanted to hear the sound of the water and listening to my breathing was relaxing enough. I didn’t need anything else and I didn’t have any pain relief.
“The moment she was born I just remember saying, ‘We did it!’ I was so proud of me and Daisy. Then a few minutes later we did put a song on. Sam had his arm around me and we were playing My Girl, it was such a lovely moment.”
The scene bears stark contrast to the arrival of their Sonny, who was born six weeks prematurely and spent nine days in hospital following his birth after developing jaundice and needing help with his feeding.
“It was the complete other end of the spectrum,” Briony explains. “I felt safer and in control, whereas last time I didn’t feel in control of anything. I had loads of doctors staring at me and it was a total blur.”
“It was chalk and cheese,” adds Sam. “This time Briony was on all fours in the water and I could see Daisy’s head and her little lips were pouting. It was amazing. With Sonny I was more teary as there was just relief that he was OK, whereas this time it was just excitement.”
The 29 year old continues, “She’s perfect and cute as a button. I got to cut her umbilical cord and I put a little personalized cotton cord tie on the end of it.”
And there is no mistaking that Daisy is a member of the Aston family, as just like her dad and big brother she has been blessed with a full head of red hair.
“The bright red hair gives it away,” giggles Briony. “We have a photo of Sam as a baby and she looks exactly like him. They’re identical.”
“I can even see it myself,” adds Sam with a laugh.
Briony continues, “But she weighed 9lbs 1.5oz, which I still can’t believe because me and Sam aren’t big or tall. She was quite big!”
The couple were under no illusions that two under two were going to be tough, and as they reflect on their new life as a family of four they are the first to admit that things have been somewhat “chaotic”.
“It’s full-on from the moment we wake up,” says Sam. “It’s like having a job! Sonny has us up at 5am and there is no time to think as the day is just gone.
“My current life actually goes very well with my storyline and Chesney having quads. If you see me looking knackered on the screen it’s because I am!” he laughs. “A lot of people go to work for a break from their kids but I’ve got five kids at work!”
“We’ve definitely realised it’s a lot easier when we’re a team,” says Briony. “It’s good fun juggling two together but two under two by yourself is really hard work. But I’ve been lucky Sam has had some quiet time at work so he’s been able to be around a lot.”
But Sam also confesses that there have been times when he’s been left feeling like a “spare part” as Briony is cluster feeding daisy.
“She wants to be on Briony a lot so sometimes I feel like a bit of a spare part,” says Sam. “A lot of the time when I’m holding her she just wants Briony and she can settle her straight away.
“She’s definitely a mummy’s girl and sometimes I’m a bit like, ‘Oh!’ But when I do get 10 minutes to cuddle her I really cherish it.”
Sam continues, “I think it’s something a lot of dad’s feel if you’re not bottle feeding. But it has also meant I’ve spent a lot of time playing with Sonny and bonding with him.
“I don’t want to wish time away but when she’s a bit older I’ll be able to do more with her as she won’t be as dependent on Briony. There’s only so much I can do right now.”
And away from home Sam has received plenty of well wishes and support from his Corrie castmates.
“When Daisy was born Corrie sent some lovely flowers and Dolly’s [Rose Campbell] mum knitted her a little cardigan. She also did a jumper for Sonny when he was born,” says Sam.
The star will celebrate 20 years on the cobbles next year after joining the ITV soap when he was just nine years old.
“I can’t believe it’s been that long,” he says. “It’s all I’ve ever known. I’ve been through so many stages of my life on the show, from the end of primary school and all through my teenage years to getting married and having children.”
And despite being one of the show’s longest running cast members, Sam says he doesn’t ever take his job for “granted” “I feel very lucky,” he says.
“I get a year contract at a time, so every time I get that phone call I have a little toast with Briony. I don’t take it for granted and I never ever thought I’d still be here almost 20 years later.”
It’s clear Sam has relished every minute of his time on the soap, but does he have a stand out storyline?
“As a kid doing stuff with Schmeichel was amazing,” he says. “All I ever wanted was a dog and I hounded my mum and dad for one, so then to get a dog on Corrie and being working with a Great Dane all the time, I absolutely loved it.”
Sam continues, “But then I’ve also loved my recent storylines with Gemma, Bernie, Joseph and the quads. It’s manic but it’s so much fun. Me and Dolly have a great laugh and I love our family dynamic. I’ve enjoyed seeing Chesney settling down.”
It’s not surprising that Sam has built some strong friendships with his castmates over the last 20 years, and he tells us that as well as his on-screen family, some of his other co-stars are also like real family to him.
“Jennie [McAlpine] plays my sister, but she really is like a big sister to me,” Sam says. “We’ve always been close and I can go to her for anything and call her any time. I’m also close with Andy [Whyment]Alan [Halsall] and Jimmy [Harkishin] and then I share a dressing room with Mikey North.
“We have such a laugh. When you’re a kid there’s a special children’s dressing room, and then when you turn 16 you get to share with another adult, so I’ve shared with Mikey ever since then. We’re both obsessed with Gordon Ramsay so we just sit and watch funny videos of him.”
Become an OK! VIP and get all of our exclusive interviews, videos and stunning photo shoots sent straight to your inbox every week!
You’ll receive an email with stories exclusive only for OK! VIP members, including celebrity house tours, baby reveals, wedding snaps and so much more!
What are you waiting for? Sign up here
And with such a milestone nearly under his belt, we can’t help but wonder if Sam can see himself in Weatherfield for another 20 years?
“I can’t see myself doing anything else right now,” he says. “Obviously it’s hard to say what’s going to happen, but I’m really happy there.” He concludes, “It’s been a hell of a ride so far and hopefully it continues. I owe a lot to Coronation Street.”