The nation has been holding their breath and holding back tears as we've watched Emmerdale's Ashley Thomas succumb to Dementia.
The character, who was once the village Vicar, began his Dementia storyline in late 2016 when he was diagnosed with early onset Dementia. The pivotal episode which was aired just before Christmas 2016, followed his confusing and distressing day around the once familiar town. Viewers saw him confuse money for blank pieces of metal, grow concerned about whether his Mother would miss him and think a friend is trying to ‘capture’ him.
The filming was spectacular; cleverly portraying what Ashley saw combined with reality in order to help viewers to understand his struggle.
Now, Ashley’s storyline is coming to a close in next week’s episode in which Ashley is taken into hospital after collapsing at his care home and his family are told to expect the worse.
The writers of Emmerdale have been praised countless times for their exceptional script which dealt with a very loaded issue with grace, patience and dignity. They showed Ashley’s deterioration in a very real way, without sugar coating the situation beyond recognition.
The much-anticipated episode is the culmination of the show’s producers, cast and writers fantastic work over the past 5 months to give the best portrayal of Dementia that they could and chose to end Ashley Thomas' life with dignity and provide the best possible outcome for the family and the public.
The episode promises to be a real tear-jerker, and is an episode which is not to be missed.
The episode airs Friday 7th April 7pm