Wednesday 21 February 2018

'I agreed with writers to kill off Ashley' - Emmerdale actor John Middleton

Charlotte Bellamy and John Middleton attend the Inside Soap Awards
Charlotte Bellamy and John Middleton attend the Inside Soap Awards
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Emmerdale actor John Middleton said he agreed with the soap's writers when they suggested killing off Ashley, the character he's played on the TV3 programme for more than two decades.

The actor filmed his last scenes as vicar Ashely Thomas in the long-running soap and although it was difficult, he said he has never been presented with a more powerful storyline.

Laurel Thomas [Charlotte Bellamy] is busy at home oblivious to Ashley Thomas [John Middleton] struggling to stand up in the next door room.
Laurel Thomas [Charlotte Bellamy] is busy at home oblivious to Ashley Thomas [John Middleton] struggling to stand up in the next door room.

Middleton's character has been living with dementia for two years in the Yorkshire-set soap.

Speaking to The Irish Star's Chic magazine, Middleton said: "It's the best story that anyone's ever pitched to me in my career, let alone my time on Emmerdale. I was delighted to take this on. We're really stretching the boundaries and even as we were making it we weren't sure it was going to work, but it did and I'm immensely proud of it."

Charlotte Bellamy and John Middleton filmed Ashley Thomas' last scenes on the soap
Charlotte Bellamy and John Middleton filmed Ashley Thomas' last scenes on the soap

Middleton said filming Ashley's final scenes on the soap was emotional but he's delighted he won't be missing his on-screen wife Charlotte Bellamy, who plays Laurel, too much as the pair are neighbours.

"I was going to say I'd miss Charlotte the most but I won't miss her, she lives right around the corner from me. We're great friends."

John Middleton has filmed his last scene on the TV3 soap
John Middleton has filmed his last scene on the TV3 soap

The actor said he's looking forward to the opportunities open to him now that he's departed from the programme that's been his life for twenty years.

"I have no plans, I have hopes, and what I hope to do is keep working on television because that's where the most exciting work is taking place," he said.

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