Top 5 British Celebrity Breakups of 2010

Do you have your tissues handy? Some of our favorite UK personalities weren’t so lucky in love in 2010, unfortunately. Anglophenia takes a look back at some of the year’s most memorable breakups. Sniff. – MacKenzie Wilson

Ashley and Cheryl Cole

5. Ashley Cole and Cheryl Cole

We need not drag everyone back through the seedy tales of Ashley Cole‘s alleged infidelities over the years. (Well just one: remember “The Vomit Comet” fiasco?) But this couple has been doomed for a while. In the past few years, Girls Aloud singer Cheryl Cole has reformed her trouble-making image and become Britain’s sweetheart, launching a hugely successful solo career and bringing elegance and poise to her judging role on X Factor. Conversely, English soccer star Ashley become tabloid fodder and, just this summer, saw his World Cup dreams dashed. – Kevin Wicks

Arun Nayar and Elizabeth Hurley

4. Elizabeth Hurley and Arun Nayar

After dating Hugh Grant (and weathering through his 1995 arrest for soliciting a prostitute) for 13 years and having a brief fling with American film producer and real estate mogul Steve Bing (which sired a son named Damian), Elizabeth Hurley found love with Arun Nayar. The English actress and model met the Indian textile tycoon in 2002 and the two made a great match from the start. Both were gorgeous and equally successful in their own fields. Five years later, the then-42-year-old Hurley walked down the aisle two lavish ceremonies. Their cozy life on her organic farm in southwest England seemed like the real deal. Unfortunately, the union would only last three years. Hurley announced her separation from Nayar in December 2010, with People.com alluding that her supposed affair with Australian cricket legend Shane Warne was to blame. – MW

Gavin Henson and Charlotte Church

3. Charlotte Church and Gavin Henson

The “Voice of an Angel” singer and the tanned rugby stud were known as the Welsh “Posh ‘n’ Becks.” But their five-year relationship reportedly became strained as Henson’s athletic career began to falter while Church became a multi-million dollar industry unto herself, with TV shows and publishing and advertising deals. In May, the couple ended things just six weeks after announcing their engagement. (They have two kids together, Ruby, 3, and Dexter, 1.) In the months since, Church has released a critically acclaimed album, and Henson has shown off some smooth moves on Strictly Come Dancing, the UK original version of Dancing with the Stars. - KW

Carey Mulligan and Shia LeBeouf

2. Carey Mulligan and Shia LaBeouf

Carey Mulligan and Shia LaBeouf were one of Hollywood’s most likable couples. The English actress first met her American beau on the set of Oliver Stone‘s Wall Street sequel, 2010′s Money Never Sleeps, where Carey played LaBeouf’s on-screen girlfriend. Stone even takes credit for the setting the romance in motion, revealing earlier this spring, “You could see their chemistry right away, and it was pretty powerful.” LeBeouf told GQ: “She’s an unbelievably thought-provoking actress, the most talented actress I’ve ever met in my life, by leaps and bounds.” The two just seemed normal, you know — totally unaffected by the celebrity hoopla that consumes our daily lives. Sadly, all good things must come to an end. Mulligan and LaBeouf called it quits in October. – MW

Sam Mendes and Kate Winslet

1. Kate Winslet and Sam Mendes

This Oscar-winning duo’s split after seven years in March caught a lot of onlookers off guard. Weren’t they one of Hollywood’s most stable couples? According to reports, things went awry after the filming of Revolutionary Road, which found American Beauty director Mendes orchestrating bed scenes between Winslet and her Titanic co-star, Leonardo DiCaprio. But the couple’s separation has been remarkably amicable: Winslet has even opted to leave her New York home and return to London so that her kids would be close to Sam. (They have a son, Joe, and Winslet has a daughter from a previous marriage.) During the summer, Winslet took up with gorgeous model Louis Dowler, but they have since ended things. – KW

Who was 2010′s biggest British celebrity breakup?

Kevin Wicks

Kevin Wicks founded BBCAmerica.com's Anglophenia blog back in 2005 and has been translating British culture for an American audience ever since. While not British himself - he was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri - he once received inordinate hospitality in London for sharing the name of a dead but beloved EastEnders character. His Anglophilia stems from a high school love of Morrissey, whom he calls his "gateway drug" into British culture.

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