Cheryl and Liam Payne’s late night heart-to-hearts

After his engagement to Maya Henry ended, pals say the split has cleared the way for Liam Payne to play happy families again as he spends more time at ex Cheryl’s home with son Bear

Liam Payne Cheryl

by Daisy McLure |
Updated on

They’d vowed to keep their son, Bear, out of the spotlight, but last week Liam Payne gave fans a rare glimpse of life with his and ex Cheryl’s child.

As the three celebrated Father’s Day together at Cheryl’s Buckinghamshire home, Liam, 27, proudly filmed the homemade cookies the four year old had made him, with Bear’s sweet Geordie accent heard in the background.

After pals recently told Closer a reunion could be on the cards for Cheryl and Liam – after his split with ex-fiancée Maya Henry, 21 – their weekend together further fuelled fan speculation over their relationship status.

One said, “Wouldn’t surprise me if he’s secretly back with Cheryl”, while another posted, “Baby number two on the way.”

And now the Strip That Down singer no longer feels “torn” between spending time with Maya and his ex – an issue that reportedly contributed to his recent break-up – insiders say it’s paved the way for him to freely devote more of his time to Bear and Cheryl, 37.

A source says, “Of course Liam was upset about the split, but it isn’t lost on him that he has a new-found freedom to be with Cheryl and Bear without feeling guilty or worrying about what he posts on social media.

“He’s been spending a lot more time at Cheryl’s, and sometimes hangs out for the day and stays overnight. He sleeps in a spare room if it gets too late to drive back to his house in Surrey, which takes over an hour.

“Liam’s been enjoying a sense of ‘normal’ family life again. He loves being able to wake up with Cheryl and Bear and have a cosy breakfast in their pyjamas together, playing games.

“He’s also really enjoyed staying up with Cheryl after putting Bear to bed. They’ve been chatting late into the night, watching TV, and reminiscing over all the cute things Bear has said and done. It’s been great to have that connection again.

“And it’s been wonderful for Bear. He adores having his dad stay round, and Cheryl’s said how much she enjoys seeing their son revel in having his mam and dad together again.”

Maya Henry
Liam's ex Maya Henry ©Getty

Notoriously private Cheryl – who has a small circle of trusted friends – was said to have felt quite lonely during lockdown. Reports claimed she was “living like a hermit” after Liam couldn’t visit due to the restrictions.

While her mum, Joan, often comes to stay from her native Newcastle, along with her brother, Garry, insiders say having Liam around more has made the single mum realise how much she misses being part of a family unit. Last week, Cheryl said in an interview that lockdown taught her to learn to “be happy on [her] own”.

The source says, “Cheryl’s daily life felt a little isolating during lockdown – especially when Bear started school. Her evenings sometimes felt lonely.

“But since Liam’s been coming over more, she’s enjoyed some kid-free time. Having fun with him has made her realise how much she missed his company.”

Cheryl has previously said she would always “love and adore” her ex and just a couple of months ago, Liam revealed they were “closer than [we’ve] ever been before”.

The source adds, “She’s feeling really loved up with this new family life – them all being together is what makes her happiest.”

Following their split in July 2018, Cheryl hinted it was Liam who’d ended their two-and-a-half-year relationship. Responding to an interviewer who asked why she pulled the plug, 10 months after their break-up, the star shot back, “Who said it was me?”

While the pair never publicly gave a reason for their split, Cheryl’s frustration with Liam’s loose-lipped antics, along with their 10-year age gap, were said to have contributed to the pair going their separate ways.

Despite Liam moving on quickly – dating models Cairo Dwek and Naomi Campbell before falling for Texan-born Maya in August 2018 – twice-divorced Cheryl has remained single, insisting she’d “date a shelf stacker from Sainsbury’s” if it meant finding happiness.

Confirming the end of his engagement last month, Liam – who has been open about his mental health struggles since shooting to worldwide fame aged just 17 with One Direction – revealed that, like Cheryl, he “threw” himself into therapy to fight his demons. Cheryl has previously said she did the same to combat her crippling anxiety.

Liam Payne Father's day

Liam has also been up front about the toll lockdown had on his weight, revealing last month, “I put a lot of weight on. I did one performance on TV with the Baftas and I was disappointed with myself. I didn’t look how I wanted to look... I let myself go.” Since then, he revealed he’d quit alcohol and worked on his diet and fitness regime, which the source says health-conscious Cheryl – who last month revealed she was the face of supplement brand Feel Good – helps him with.

The source says, “Cheryl has been encouraging Liam to make changes to be healthier. She’s into healthy cooking, exercise and yoga, and only has the occasional glass of alcohol. It’s rubbing off on Liam – he wants a better lifestyle, like her, and to feel good in his own skin again.”

CHECK OUT Cheryl and Liam's relationship timeline


Cheryl and Liam Payne: Their love story from the start - SLIDER

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CREDIT: Shutterstock

Liam Payne Cheryl Tweedy

A look back at Cheryl and Liam's relationship from his solo X Factor audition in 2008 to their split in 2018...

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Liam and Cheryl on the X Factor

The pair originally met back in 2008 when Liam first auditioned for the X Factor. Cheryl was a definitely fan of his talent and during the audition she said: "I like you, I think you're really cute. I think you've got charisma and you give us that little cheeky wink."Unfortunately, Liam didn't make it past the judges houses in 2008 but he later auditioned for the show AGAIN in 2010...

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Liam and Cheryl meet AGAIN in 2010

On his second appearance all the judges LOVED him, and Cheryl commented: "You've definitely got it, whatever it is you've got it. And I thought your voice was really, really powerful."At the bootcamp stage Liam joined forces with four other boys - Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Zayn Malik and Louis Tomlinson - and One Direction was created.During one week at the live performances Simon was ill and the boy band were mentored by Cheryl instead. When they were asked how they felt about their new mentor Liam revealed they found it difficult to concentrate.Well, she is gorgeous Liam.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl nominates Liam for the ALS Ice Bucket challenge

Strangely enough, years before Cheryl and Liam started dating she nominated him for the ice bucket challenge on Instagram!

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Liam Payne and Sophia Smith's relationship

Before Cheryl and Liam's relationship began, Liam was in a relationship with Sophia Smith - a girl he had met at school - however in October 2015 the pair split after two years of dating.

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Cheryl and Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini's marriage

Meanwhile, Cheryl had already surprised the world when she revealed that she had secretly married Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini, but it wasn't to last. The pair split after 18 months together and Cheryl filed for divorce for 'unreasonable behaviour.'

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Cheryl and Liam's relationship begins

December 2015There were rumours that the pair first felt a spark during the X Factor final in 2015 which was also One Direction's last performance together. Apparently eyewitnesses saw the pair flirting shamelessly.14 FebruaryOn Valentine's day Liam uploaded a photo of a rose with the caption: "Happy Valentine's Day baby…"(Remember: Chezza has that huge rose tattoo on her bum)

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Chezza's Brit Awards selfie

24 FebruaryA couple of weeks later Cheryl uploaded a photo with the caption: "Practicing my snap #BRITs"And Liam commented: "See you there babe"People began wondering if the pair were an item or not.

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CREDIT: Twitter / je_baker

The couple take a trip to Tesco

27 FebruaryLiam and Cheryl were spotted shopping in Tesco's in Guildford and the person who took the photo wrote: "It was definitely Cheryl and Liam but unfortunately I didn't get a picture."They were in my local Tesco in Guildford at midnight."

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Liam kind of makes it Instagram official

28 FebruaryLiam and Cheryl confirmed their relationship with the singer updating his Instagram photo to a picture of the pair looking loved up and wrote in his bio 'Happy'.Liam deleted all pictures of his ex-girlfriend Sophia and unfollowed her on Instagram. Awkward.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl hits back at the haters

29 FebruaryCheryl hit back at her online trolls by changing her Instagram bio to: "When people hate on you, it's because you've got something they want. All love… good vibes only"Although she later deleted the first bit and left it as "All love… good vibes only."

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

They FINALLY make their relationship Instagram official

March 3The pair then teased the world with pictures of each; Cheryl uploaded a selfie featuring Liam's arm and the One Direction star uploaded a photo of the pair posing for a photo – awwww these two!

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl and Liam age gap

March 5After teasing the world with their relationship, the happy couple, who have a ten-years age gap, were spotted for the first time in public since they confirmed their relationship at a casino in Mayfair.

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Cheryl Tweedy Liam Payne

March 8A source told Closer magazine: "Cheryl fell for Liam extremely fast – she didn't think it was possible to fall in love so quickly after her whirlwind romance with JB, but she's fallen even faster this time."Once their relationship took off, they were saying 'I love you' within a few weeks."

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Cheryl Tweedy Liam Payne

March 9Cheryl and Liam were spotted holding hands leaving Salmontini restaurant in London.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl Tweedy

Cheryl defends her relationship in an emotional Instagram post. The picture she uploaded read: "Girls compete with each other. Women empower one another"She captioned the photo: "It can be so hard at times being a girl for sooo many reasons! But we don't have to make it harder for each other…"Why do we still feel the need to do that?? I don't understand it. I have always been a girls girl, and love other strong women."She continued: "That is why I surround myself with them, and that is why I try to empower others. Trying to pull another person down, only speaks volumes about your character!"And not a thing about theirs… There's nothing more powerful or beautiful than an inspiring, strong women that can look up to or turn to… Be one!!!"

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl and Liam's FIRST Easter together

Cheryl posted a photo of Liam carrying a BUNCH of Easter eggs on Instagram.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Simon Cowell speaks out about Cheryl and Liam's relationship

April 3Simon Cowell spoke about Liam and Cheryl's relationship. The X Factor boss revealed: "I saw them together and we had a really nice dinner."They were on good form. They're like two little chipmunks madly in love."Literally, they were so cute."How adorable!

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

It doesn't look like Cheryl and Liam's dogs are getting along...

In April Liam posted a video on Instagram of himself and Cheryl training his dog and although the puppy doesn't listen to Liam he does listen to Cheryl's commands.

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Cheryl Liam Payne

April 12Liam and Cheryl were spotted again looking VERY cute at the London restaurant Sexy Fish.

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Cheryl Liam Payne

May 9Liam and Cheryl had their first red carpet moment together at the Global Gift Gala in Paris. After this event rumours started as to whether Cheryl was pregnant after people noticed a tiny 'bump'.

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Cheryl Liam Payne

May 12A few days later the happy couple appeared together on the red carpet at the 69th Cannes Film Festival.

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CREDIT: Shutterstock / Rex

Cheryl on Liam Payne: "He will be the perfect dad!

May 17A source told Closer magazine: "When friends have quizzed her [Cheryl] about what's happening with Liam she's been saying she's letting it all happen naturally – and that Liam will be the perfect dad!"

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Cheryl Liam Payne

June 11Liam and Cheryl attend his sister Ruth's wedding as a couple and looked VERY stylish.

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CREDIT: Twitter / ruthpayne0990

Liam Payne's sister defends Chezza

June 19Liam's sister defended her own wedding dress and Cheryl's outfit after seeing negative articles online. On Twitter she wrote: "I loved my wedding dress, I felt like a princess, I also lost 3st to feel as beautiful as I did in it, that was hard work when I'm a naturally chunky girl, not everyone needs to be a size 10 to get married."I also had no say over my wedding, I don't know who does have a say but considering my brother's girlfriend is one of the most beautiful women in the world she can wear anything and still look stunning as she did at my wedding."

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl Liam Payne

June 19Pregnancy rumours started to pick up after a source told The Sun: "It's very serious now between Cheryl and Liam and they have been talking among close friends about starting a family."

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Liam Payne

July 9Cheryl revealed on Instagram that the pair have bought an adorable puppy together. She uploaded a snap of Liam and the new miniature dog with the caption: "Our new family member he is beyond cute… The dog is adorable too."Cheeky!

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl Simon Cowell

July 30Simon Cowell admitted that Cheryl would be an amazing mum. Although he didn't confirm or deny whether Cheryl is pregnant Simon did tell the Mirror: "Cheryl would be an amazing mum. I have seen her with my son Eric and other kids over the years and she is incredible."Cute!

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CREDIT: Twitter / liampayne

Liam Payne

September 15Liam changed his Twitter bio to read: "Luckiest man in the world" which fuelled any pregnancy rumours further.

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Liam Payne Cheryl

September 21Liam shared a cute photo of the pair wearing face masks. He captioned the photo: "I miss you! The things you make me do. Home soon!"How adorable are they?

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl's mum Joan

September 25Cheryl's mum was pictured buying a pregnancy pillow in Mothercare and after this photo surfaced the pregnancy rumours were at an all-time high.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial


October 3After being fairly absent from social media Cheryl uploaded a stunning selfie on Instagram with a butterfly filter.

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Cheryl divorces her ex-husband

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial


October 27Cheryl had a perfume signing for her fans. Chezza sat behind her desk during her perfume signing but was still happy to take pictures with fans.

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November 2It was revealed that Cheryl was the new face of Childline and after being absent from the television she appeared on The One Show but pregnancy rumours were not mentioned.

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Cheryl FINALLY shows off her baby bump

November 29Cheryl and Liam stepped out and attended the Fayre of St James Christmas Carol Concert in London and everyone finally got to see Cheryl's growing 'baby bump'. Congratulations guys!

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CREDIT: Twitter / ruthpayne0990

Liam's sister speaks out AGAIN about the happy couple

December 1After Cheryl showed off her baby bump rumours of her pregnancy were sent into overdrive. Liam's sister spoke out about the news and said on Twitter: "Bump or no bump, announced or not, it's completely up to my brother and Cheryl what parts of their private lives they choose to share and when"

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Liam follows Cheryl on Instagram

December 5The former One Direction member took their relationship one step further and followed Chezza on Instagram. Before, Liam only followed his ex-girlfriend Sophia Smith but when the pair split up he unfollowed her and followed no one else on the social media site.With over 16 million followers on Instagram Liam now only follows Cheryl - this must be love, right?

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Wedding bells for Liam and Cheryl?

December 8There were rumours that Liam was planning to propose to Cheryl after she's given birth. According to the Daily Star a friend of the couple told the publication the One Direction star got inspiration from Kimberley Walsh and Justin Scott. They said: "It's given Liam so many ideas. There will definitely be wedding bells sooner than we expected."Eek!

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CREDIT: Twitter / liampayne

Liam Payne SLAMS Louis Walsh

December 9After Louis Walsh was asked how he'd feel if Simon Cowell brought Cheryl back to the X Factor judging panel he told Huffington Post: "Well Simon wouldn't invite Cheryl back because we have Nicole."We have Nicole [Scherzinger] and Sharon [Osbourne], we don't need another girl. So go and f—k off now!"No silly questions, seriously… It's not about Cheryl. Don't be stupid, man."Things didn't end there though because Liam soon took to Twitter to defend his girlfriend and hit back at Louis.

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CREDIT: Twitter / cherylofficial


Cheryl simply replied to Liam's tweet saying: "Oh..."Yes Liam! Sticking up for the lady in your life.

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CREDIT: Closer Online

Cheryl Liam Payne baby lookalike

December 12Closer Online unveiled a picture of what Liam and Cheryl's baby could look like.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl Liam Payne

December 20During the run up to Christmas the couple posted funny festive cards on social media. How cute are they as a couple.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Liam Payne Cheryl

December 25On Christmas Day Cheryl uploaded an ADORABLE photo of herself and Liam using the elf Snapchat filter. She wrote on Instagram: "Merry Christmas from our families to yours. Hope you've had a great day."Cute!

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CREDIT: Instagram / wendyiles_hair


January 18The world was sent into frenzy after Cheryl's hairdresser Wendy Iles posted a video of Chezza on a shoot featuring a rare glimpse of her 'baby bump'.

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CREDIT: Twitter / cheriamnews

Cheryl Liam Payne

January 29People began to wonder whether Liam had a tattoo dedicated to Cheryl after fans noticed he had a new tat on his arm of an eye that resembles Cheryl's. A fan wrote on Twitter: "First he brought the sparkle back to her eyes, then he got it tattooed."

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CREDIT: Instagram / marianovivanco


February 3Shortly after Beyonce announced she's expecting twins, rumour's began to swirl that Cheryl was going to pose for a 'pregnancy' photoshoot. Mariano Vivanco posted a cyrptic picture on his Instagram story before quickly deleting it, but it read: "My Devine @cherylofficial..."

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial


February 23Just a month before welcoming her little one, Chez proudly cradled her baby bump as part of a powerful campaign.Go Cheryl!

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Liam gushes Cheryl's been his "dream girl" since he was younger

Throughout Liam's time in One Direction he often said his celebrity crush was Cheryl and who would have thought a few years later they'd be dating with a baby, ey?Well in March 2017, the boyband member opened up about his relationship with his O/H and admitted: "In a non-cliché way, it's weird waking up every day and literally living out your dream."You wake up in the most beautiful places. Obviously I have the most beautiful girlfriend in the world and she's absolutely amazing."He added: "She's been my dream girl since I was younger. She's so ace."

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Closer Online guess when Chezza will reveal she's given birth

Cheryl has always been one to share an adorable post on Mother's Day so at Closer Online we guessed that theGirls Aloud star may confirm she's given birth on the special day.It's safe to say that we wasn't far off...

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl and Liam annonce their baby news

March 25 2017 In March Cheryl and Liam confirmed they've welcomed a baby boy into the world. The yummy mummy wrote on Instagram: "On Wednesday 22nd March Liam and I became parents to an incredibly beautiful, healthy baby boy, weighing 7lb 9 and looking like a dream. "Although he still doesn't have a name he is already stealing hearts. We are all madly in love and overwhelmingly happy with our little arrival. "Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers around the world. A day that now has a different meaning to me forever ud83dudc99 "Liam added: "My close friends and family know there are very few times when I'm left speechless... wow!"I'm incredibly happy to welcome our new baby boy into the world, it's a moment that I will never forget for the rest of my life and my favourite memory I have so far. "I'm completely in awe of his incredible mother and how she has been the whole way through this, she's really made my dreams come true."

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CREDIT: L'Oreal & The Princes Trust


Shortly after Cheryl and Liam welcomed their first child into the world it became very clear that they would be keeping their little one out of the spotlight. It was reported that they would not be doing any mag deals after welcoming their baby boy.

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CREDIT: Snapchat

Bear Payne

Chezza's hair stylist posted this sweet snap and fans rushed to speculate whether it was the new arrival.

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Cheryl and Liam announce their son's name

May 2Months after welcoming their first child together the happy couple finally revealed that their son is called Bear Payne. A photo even surfaced of Chez, Liam and Bear and it's safe to say that it was not what we were expecting.The world was surprised by other famous Bears' rushed to congratulate the couple on the unique name. Liam later revealed the real reason he and his girlfriend decided on the name Bear.

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CREDIT: Getty Images

Cheryl Liam Payne

Liam was quick to reveal his sons nickname and it's safe to say that it's absolutely adorable.

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Liam reveals Cheryl tried to breakup with him

After becoming parents Liam admitted that his relationship wasn't always smooth sailing. He admitted that she actually tried to break up with his once...Good job they worked though it, ey?

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Cheryl's pregnancy weight loss

May 22Just two months after welcoming baby Bear, Liam revealed that his O/H had already lost all her baby weight. Wowza!

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Liam and Cheryl ready for baby number two?

It wasn't long before Liam revealed he and Chez have already spoken about having even more children.N'aww.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl talks her sex life with Liam Payne

Despite being VERY private about their son (well, Cheryl's mainly) the popstar couple continue to tease fans about their sex life. From admitting that he's had 'no complaints' from Cheryl about the size of his manhood to taking inspiration from an X-rated tweetto romance his girlfriend, Liam isn't one to keep quiet.Even Cheryl's broken her social media silence by giving her boyfriend a little PDA. She even sent fans into a frenzy following a raunchy tweet about her sex life with Liam Payne.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Liam Payne

On Father's Day Cheryl opened up about Liam's relationship with baby Bear and it's safe to say that it's absolutely adorable.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial


September 2017Despite Liam previously admitting that he and Cheryl want more children, Closer Magazine revealed that the mum-of-one isn't ready to extend their family just yet.

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Liam shares a photo of Bear Grey Payne

Although Cheryl has barely said anything about her little one, Liam revealed the real reason they're only showing 'glimpses' of their son on social media.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Cheryl heads back to work

Just four months after welcoming baby Bear,Cheryl returned to work and looked as fabulous as ever.

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CREDIT: Instagram / liampayne

Liam Payne Bear

Even though Bear's parents are millionaires, they made it clear they will not be spoiling their little one. That didn't stop them from buying him a pair of Yeezy trainers and splashing out on designer clothes.Oh, how the other half live.

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CREDIT: Instagram / cherylofficial

Are Cheryl and Liam engaged?

February 2018Two years after the couple started dating and there's been a lot of speculation on whether Cheryl and Liam are engaged after the yummy mummy stepped out with a massive ring.

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CREDIT: Shutterstock / Rex

Have Liam and Cheryl split?

Shortly after the engagement rumours it was reported that the popstar couple's relationship was 'under strain'. Then it came to light that the former One Direction star was seeking legal advice about their 'split'.Eek!Things appeared to get even more awkward afterCheryl dodged a question about her O/Hin her BBC breakfast interview and then she hit back at FANS who quiz her on her relationship.Drama!

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CREDIT: Shutterstock / Rex

Cheryl and Liam put on a united front

After putting on a united front at the Brit AwardsLiam and Chez then hit back at the haters with a defiant video. The mum-of-one then went on a FURIOUS Twitter rant about critics of her relationship with Liam and just when you thought all was well with the pair, Cheryl ignoredLiam Payne's tasteless jokes on social media.

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CREDIT: Shutterstock

Cheryl and Liam Payne confirm SPLIT

After a two-year relationship Liam Payne and Cheryl confirmed they'd split on Twitter. Despite going their 'separate ways' they went on to say: "Bear is our world and we ask that you respect his privacy as we navigate our way through this together."

Liam Payne Father's day

After Liam saying “I already feel good” after working on his issues and crediting Cheryl for being “chill these days”, pals say they’ve frankly started talking about getting back together.

Earlier this month, sources told Closer that broody Cheryl – who revealed in 2020 she was looking into “other options” for having a baby – was open to the idea of them having a second child, to give Bear a full sibling.

And now insiders say spending so much time together since Liam’s split from Maya has highlighted how deep their connection is, which has made both of them consider giving things another shot.

The source says, “They are still very much attracted to each other. It’s clear there’s a spark and now they’re both in much better places, they feel it could be a case of second time lucky.”

Read more in this week's Closer mag, out now ©Closer-mag


Is broody Cheryl about to ‘give it another shot’ with Liam Payne?

Cheryl says she wants two more children and 'is looking for a sperm donor'

Cheryl returns to Instagram following Liam Payne and Maya Henry split

But insiders say although Cheryl – who turns 38 this week – appears loved-up, she is worried about potential negative impacts on their friendship if a reunion doesn’t work. The source adds, “She’s nervous about souring things if their relationship didn’t work out the second time around.

“Her pals suggested she tests the waters behind closed doors before they go public, so they can take a step back if it doesn’t work.

“Meanwhile, Liam is planning something special for her birthday. Everyone is hoping this might be a chance to see if it can be a case of things working out.

Read more in this week's Closer mag, out now

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