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Rachel Stevens announces split from her childhood sweetheart husband of 12 years Alex Bourne 

Rachel Stevens and her husband Alex Bourne have split up, the singer announced on Friday.

Former S Club 7 star Rachel, 44, took to her Instagram stories to let her fans know about the sad news.

She wrote: “I just wanted to share with you that over time and consideration the difficult decision has been made for Alex and I to split up.

End of the road: Rachel Stevens, 44, and husband Alex Bourne have split up, the singer announced Friday

End of the road: Rachel Stevens, 44, and husband Alex Bourne have split up, the singer announced Friday

“Although we are no longer marriage partners, we remain partners in parenting our beautiful girls and continue to love and respect each other.

“I feel so incredibly grateful for the life we’ve built together and will now continue to focus on moving forward together as a family.”

The couple would celebrate their 13th wedding anniversary next month.

Milestone: The couple was set to celebrate their 13th wedding anniversary next month (pictured in 2011)

Milestone: The couple was set to celebrate their 13th wedding anniversary next month (pictured in 2011)

Change: Former S Club 7 star Rachel took to her Instagram Stories to let her fans know about the sad news

Change: Former S Club 7 star Rachel took to her Instagram Stories to let her fans know about the sad news

Rachel and Alex, who were childhood sweethearts, were married at Claridge’s in London in 2009.

The pair walked down the aisle to S Club 7’s hit song Never Had A Dream Come True and her bandmates – Bradley McIntosh, Hannah Spearritt, Jo O’Meara, Jon Lee, Paul Cattermole and Tina Barrett – were there to see them say : ‘I do’.

Rachel and Alex share two children, Amelie (11) and Minnie (8).

Rachel recently talked about reuniting with her childhood sweetheart, Alex.

The former pop star discussed her defining moments in life, recalling repeatedly “randomly” bumping into her ex-boyfriend.

Love Story: Rachel recently opened up about meeting her high school sweetheart whom she later married on Roxie Nafousi's podcast The Moments That Made Me

Love Story: Rachel recently opened up about meeting her high school sweetheart whom she later married on Roxie Nafousi’s podcast The Moments That Made Me

Rachel explained how it was ‘like being pulled together’ on Roxie Nafousi’s The Moments That Made Me podcast

She said, ‘We were childhood sweethearts. We dated when we were 12, we met at the youth club and I was in love with him!

“We’ve probably been out for about four weeks and when you’re that old, that was a really long time!”

The blonde beauty explained how the couple were in the same social groups and grew up together in North London.

Loved up: The former S Club 7 star, gushed about her partner Alex who she married in 2009 (pictured in 2017)

Loved up: The former S Club 7 star, gushed about her partner Alex who she married in 2009 (pictured in 2017)

She shared their love story and continued, “We then went on a date again when we were 16 and then again when we were 18 and then we broke up, you know, of course I went out and did my thing, he went away and did his thing.

“Years and years later I was randomly in Selfridges and he walked in and we ran into each other.

“We were both in our late twenties and strangely enough as he came in he said, ‘I know I’m going to see you, he knew he’s going to see me…’

Unfortunately, the timing wasn’t right for the couple as Rachel had just come out of a long-term relationship and Alex had a girlfriend at the time.

Happy ending: Rachel discussed her defining life moments as she recalled repeatedly 'accidentally' bumping into her former boyfriend

Happy ending: Rachel discussed her defining life moments as she recalled repeatedly ‘accidentally’ bumping into her former boyfriend

Sweethearts: Rachel said, 'We started dating when we were 12, we met at the youth club and I was in love with him!  We probably went out for about four weeks'

Sweethearts: Rachel said, ‘We started dating when we were 12, we met at the youth club and I was in love with him! We probably went out for about four weeks’

She explained: ‘It was just lovely to see him as an old friend and from then on we kept bumping into each other randomly.

“His relationship with his girlfriend ended and then I went to LA and he was an actor then, so he came to LA too.

“Then we rekindled our relationship!

“So it was quite a random encounter and when we randomly bumped into each other, it was like we were drawn to each other.”

Growing up: The blonde beauty (pictured age 20 performing at S Club 7 in 1999) explained how the couple were in the same social groups, growing up together in North London

Growing up: The blonde beauty (pictured age 20 performing at S Club 7 in 1999) explained how the couple were in the same social groups, growing up together in North London

Fame game: Rachel found success with pop group S Club 7 (clockwise LR Rachel, Paul Cattermole, Jon Lee, Tina Barrett, Bradley McIntosh, Hanah Spearritt, Jo O'Meara) (pictured in 1999)

Fame game: Rachel found success with pop group S Club 7 (clockwise LR Rachel, Paul Cattermole, Jon Lee, Tina Barrett, Bradley McIntosh, Hanah Spearritt, Jo O’Meara) (pictured in 1999)

Throwback: Rachel explained how it was 'like being pulled together' on Roxie Nafousi's The Moments That Made Me podcast (Rachel and Alex pictured in 2011)

Throwback: Rachel explained how it was ‘like being pulled together’ on Roxie Nafousi’s The Moments That Made Me podcast (Rachel and Alex pictured in 2011)

Family: Rachel and Alex later welcomed two daughters Amelie, 11, and Minnie, eight (both pictured)

Family: Rachel and Alex later welcomed two daughters Amelie, 11, and Minnie, eight (both pictured)

Rachel admitted that after rekindling their romance, she knew Alex was “the one” but said they took their relationship slowly, adding “the rest is history.”

Rachel and Alex later welcomed two daughters Amelie, 11, and Minnie, eight.

Former Dancing On Ice contestant Rachel was previously in a relationship with former Hollyoaks actor Jeremy Edwards.

He proposed to Rachel on Valentine’s Day in 2002, with the couple going on their first date 18 months earlier.

The couple never married and in 2004 they separated.

History: Rachel was previously in a relationship with former Hollyoaks actor Jeremy Edwards and he proposed to her on Valentine's Day in 2002, before they later split without getting married in 2004 (pictured in 2003)

History: Rachel was previously in a relationship with former Hollyoaks actor Jeremy Edwards and he proposed to her on Valentine’s Day in 2002, before they later split without getting married in 2004 (pictured in 2003)

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