John Middleton cried watching Ashley Thomas' death on Emmerdale

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 6 April 2017
John Middleton

John Middleton

John Middleton cried watching his character's death on 'Emmerdale', which left him feeling "uncomfortable" when he watched his final scenes

John Middleton cried watching his character's death on 'Emmerdale'.

The 63-year-old actor has revealed his storyline in the longstanding soap, which saw him play the role of Ashley Thomas who battled with dementia for two years, tugged on his heart strings because he found the plot "harrowing", especially watching his co-star Rosie Bentham's, who plays his on-screen daughter Gabby Thomas, reaction.

Speaking to The Sun Online about his last scenes, he said: "You can't get away from the fact that it's harrowing.

"I did shed a tear, but it wasn't so much about me, I was watching other people like little Alfie and Rosie who plays Gabby and their reaction, which I found deeply moving.

"Freddie who was holding my hand, I found that immensely moving. And I have to say, it's beautifully written, it's a beautiful episode to watch."

And watching the episode where he died as a viewer left him feeling "uncomfortable" because it made him realise it was the end of his time acting on the programme, which he has been a part of for 20 years.

He explained: "It's uncomfortable to see yourself dying. It's nothing unusual to play death [but] nevertheless, it did signal the end of 20 years of my life."

However John has found portraying the loveable vicar has made him "immensely proud", especially because he has been praised by viewers for his "accurate" depiction of the disease from those who have "direct contact" with dementia themselves.

Speaking previously, he said: "People are stopping me in the streets saying thank you for doing this, and that is in many ways the best award. Particularly when you are talking to people who have got direct contact with this disease, who have lost loved ones to it, or who are caring for people with it, or people who have the disease. They say thank you for portraying it so accurately, so that makes me immensely proud."

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