26/07/2017 12:25 BST

Emma Willis's 'Who Do You Think You Are?' Unearths Grisly Family Secret

'That was exactly what I didn’t want to find out.'

Emma Willis got an unpleasant surprise about her family history, while filming an appearance on the genealogy show, ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’.

The ‘Big Brother’ presenter uncovered the rather grisly background of one of her predecessors during filming, relating to her five-times-great grandfather, Richard Fowler.

She found out that, back in the 18th century, her distant relative had attempted to kill a blacksmith and his son, at a time of religious unrest in Ireland.

Jeff Spicer via Getty Images
Emma Willis

Richard, who was a Protestant, broke into the Catholic blacksmith’s family home, stabbing them multiple times with a bayonet before torturing them to try and get information.

As reported by The Sun, an emotional Emma was stunned by the news, saying: That’s horrific. How can you defend doing that to somebody? That was exactly what I didn’t want to find out.”

Emma isn’t the only celebrity who got a rude awakening about their family background on ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’, though.

Comedian Alan Carr has repeatedly spoken in his stand-up about his disappointment about discovering one of his ancestors was a “deserter”, while actor Ben Affleck was forced to issue a statement after research on the US show ‘Finding Your Roots’ unearthed the fact that one of his distant relatives was a slave-owner, and he requested that this information be left out of the final footage.

Danny Dyer had an altogether more positive experience, though, discovering that he was a descendant of royalty during his episode.

Emma’s episode of ‘Who Do You Think You Are’ will air on BBC One at 9pm on Thursday 3 August.

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