Arsenal fan Jake was born in London and dreamt of being an actor from an early age. As a child he attended a drama club in Islington for ten years, before landing roles playing two different characters in Press Gang - a BAFTA award-winning children's TV show - as a teenager. He went on to appear in several popular TV series, including Only Fools And Horses, Red Dwarf, The Bill and One Foot In The Grave. It was the role of married womaniser Max Branning in hit BBC soap EastEnders which really made him a household name, however. Jake joined the cast in July 2006, when his character proceeded to cause havoc in the Square as he embarked upon an affair with his son's girlfriend. In real life the actor has been happily married since 2001 to former care-worker Alison, with whom he has a daughter Amber.