Ah, celebrity couples: are any of them really in love? How many of them are just in it for a bit of exposure and the extra bundles of cash that come with it? Well, it seems that Big Brother ‘lovers’ Preston and Chantelle Houghton are a pair of dastardly fakers, or at least they are if you believe what they write in gossip rag Heat.

The mag claims that they engineered a fake romance before they went into the Ultimate Big Brother house, hoping that they would be able to milk some lovely wonga out of the whole thing. They were right too, as they both apparently signed a contract worth up to £120,000 to sell their story as a couple after they left the house.

‘They spoke on the phone several times before they went back in,’ said a source. ‘They discussed how much they would be paid, and when Chantelle found out Preston was getting £40,000 she went back to the Channel 4 producers and demanded the same. They knew that they were a valuable commodity as a pair, much more than individually.’

‘She wants the public to believe she's back with Preston,’ added an alleged friend of Chantelle. ‘She was delighted they got so much attention when they went for a meal. It was all set up, of course. And she knows the more aloof Preston acts, the better it makes her look. People know they're a 'brand' and they're worth more while there is speculation about their romance.

‘They love keeping the public guessing and will string it out as long as they can. She knows how things work and will have told him, ‘This will make us rich’.’

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