Ruth Langsford tears up on This Morning over Emmerdale dementia storyline as father suffered from it too


by Emma Dodds |
Published on

Emmerdale actors John Middleton and Charlotte Bellamy appeared on This Morning to discuss Ashley Thomas' devastating dementia battle


Emmerdale fans have been completely captivated by the happenings in the soap recently - hats off to you, producers!

But the one storyline that has really gripped the entire nation is that of poor Ashley Thomas, who is suffering from an aggressive case of vascular dementia.

John Middleton and Charlotte Bellamy appeared on This Morning today (Credit: ITV) ©ITV

And devastatingly, soap fans will know that Ashley will die in tonight episode.

John Middleton, who plays Ashley in the soap, appeared on [This Morning] earlier today along with his on-screen wife Charlotte Bellamy, who plays Laurel, to discuss his exit from the show.

John, who has played Ashley on the soap for over 20 years, admitted that he will miss the show, with Charlotte confessing that she's "bereft" without John.

READ MORE: All the Emmerdale Spoilers you need to know about Ashley Thomas

Emmerdale Ashley Thomas Dementia
Emmerdale fans have praised John for his portrayal of a dementia sufferer (Credit: ITV Pictures)

John, who has received boundless praise for his portrayal of someone with dementia, said: "For me, I'm sad to be leaving the show after 20 years and this working relationship - although Charlotte and I will stay friends - we live in the same town and there's lots of places to have coffee and we both have dogs we walk, but I really love working with Charlotte and I'm sad I won't be doing that anymore."

The topic brought host Ruth Langsford to tears, as her father battled the disease.

Welling up, Ruth said: "I've said to you both previously how I've followed this story for a long time, and obviously my father had dementia, and I think you and the Emmerdale producers have absolutely done it proud."

READ MORE: Things you should know if you are caring for someone with dementia/Alzheimer’s disease

Ruth couldn't hold back the tears (Credit: ITV) ©ITV

Eamonn Holmes added: "Ruth is about to cry - anyone that can identify with this condition in their family life will be crying tonight."

John agreed that the pair often get stopped in the street by fans with heartfelt gratitude: "We are literally stopped in the street most days and someone will come up to us and say, 'Thank you very much, I don't feel so alone' and that's a wonderful endorsement."

Emmerdale aired an episode last November which was the first of its kind: an episode completely shown from the point of view of Ashley - a dementia sufferer.

John revealed that The Alzheimer's Society are showing the episode for training purposes: "They are using it as a training video so they can show the world from a perspective of someone with dementia which is immensely flattering."

Ashley Thomas Emmerdale dementia
The Alzheimer's Society are showing John's special episode for training (Credit: ITV Pictures)

Ruth teared up once again at the end of the interview to tell John: "From all the families who have got loved ones with dementia, or who have lost people, you really have done a fantastic job with promoting awareness I think. So thank you from all of us."

John called Ruth's sentiments as "an award in itself", thanking her for her kind words.

Have you been following Ashley's story on Emmerdale? Will you be sad to see him go? Let us know over on Facebook and Twitter.

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