James Lock admits he’s ‘a very troubled man’ after facing his past on Ex On The Beach

He might be a TOWIE veteran, but James ‘Lockie’ Lock found himself in uncharted waters when he agreed to join Celebrity Ex On The Beach.

The reality show is very different to the one on which he found fame and when it comes to love, the star admitted: "I need a lot of healing, I'm a very troubled man!"

It’s fair to say that when fans tune in for the reality show, whatever else kicks off in the Canaries, all eyes will be on Lockie and former Love Island star Megan Barton-Hanson, who enjoyed a whirlwind romance after meeting on the MTV show, only to then split in December.

But of course, the show is about bringing stars back together with their exes and while we’ll have to wait to see which former lovers of the reality star arrive in the Canaries, Lockie has famously dated Yazmin Oukhellou and Danielle Armstrong on TOWIE.

But he admits the whole experience was worlds away from TOWIE's trips to the nightclubs of Essex.

He told new magazine: “Obviously, TOWIE is completely different with the set up.

“I've done TOWIE for years, like ten years now — I'm like the Phil Mitchell of TOWIE! Obviously, TOWIE is improvised, scripted reality, whatever you want to call it. Scenes and stuff are set up. We're all real characters but it's set up for your entertainment."

While the idea of spending weeks on an island with sun and fun sounds idyllic, it’s pretty intense as there’s nowhere to hide.

James added: “With this, as much as it is for the show, it's a lot more realistic.

"There's not things that are improvised, things aren’t really set up, you're all stuck in a villa and you're sort of left to your own — you can crack on how you want.

"It’s all pretty much what you see is all real. Real emotions, real feelings, but on a whole it was good.”

“This is the first time I've done this sort of show where you have to stay in a villa with strangers,' he continued. So in that sense, it was different. When I first went in, I was a little bit apprehensive to go into this sort of environment. I didn't know what to expect, but on the whole, coming out of it… I feel like I enjoyed it, there were more pros than there were cons.”

The stars taking part this year include RuPaul's Drag Race queen A'Whora, Too Hot To Handle's Kori Sampson, Love Islanders Kaz Crossley, Megan Barton-Hanson and Michael Boateng, MAFS Australia's KC Osborne, Geordie Shore's Nathan Henry and Love Island Sweden veteran Sofie Karlstad.

This series also includes a shocking new twist in the form of the Shack of Secrets, causing havoc among the villa by unveiling new exes and dishing out secret missions when our celebs least expect it.

But while he was happy to take part, Lockie reveals that he really wasn’t looking to become embroiled in arguments.

“To be honest, I'm too old for that carry on,” grins the 35-year-old. “I didn't want a load of kicking off, I just wanted an easy ride.

"Sometimes, especially what we do in reality TV, trying to get an easy ride in these sorts of shows and these environments is very difficult. But I feel like we were very lucky, very blessed, that we got the group of people that we did.”

Having met on the show and dated, only to split at the end of last year, talking to Lockie about his romance with Megan could be tricky. But it’s clear that he’s come out of the whole experience not burnt by the failed romance, but happy to have made some new friends.

He explained: “Don't get me wrong, there are a few ups and downs in there, as you can imagine. When you've got a group of people living in a small environment for a long period of time, there's always going to be moments where you're going to clash, but, on the whole… I think we were very lucky.

“We all got on and we became one big family. At the end of it, I feel like we all came out and we all sort of learnt something about each other or about ourselves. I feel like I've got a special bond with everyone within that villa and I'm glad I've done it.”

Celebrity Ex On The Beach starts at 10pm on Tuesday 15 February. For more reality TV gossip, sign up to OK! 's daily newsletter here.

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