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Charlie Hardwick quits Emmerdale: 'It's been a blast'

(Image credit: Doug Peters/EMPICS Entertainment)

Charlie Hardwick has announced she's leaving (opens in new tab)Emmerdale after an 11-year stint playing Val Pollard.

The comic character has in recent times had more than her fair share of drama, after she became HIV-positive following a holiday romance.

Charlie told "I have loved forging and playing such a funny, unpredictable and indefatigable character in the company of such a great cast. I have relished being the difficult sister wrangling with Diane, and outrageously attempting to mentor/suppress the B&B serfs Amy, Victoria, Finn and Tracy."

Charlie continued: "Above all, I have endured, sorry, enjoyed the match made in heaven with that little so and so, Eric. When Chris and I were written together 10 years ago, I had no idea how much I would come to adore working with and being in the company of such a terrific fellow.

"I'd like to thank him and all of the friends I have made in front of and behind the camera for their wit, warmth, support and dogged devotion to creativity. I will miss them terribly, but when it's time to go... Adieu dear colleagues. It has been a blast."

Exactly how Val will leave Emmerdale is a secret, but Charlie made it clear on Loose Women she'd be unhappy to leave because of the HIV storyline.

She said: "I'd be very very angry if it was HIV-related... Because I think the whole point of having Val as HIV-positive is to show that you can live a healthy and happy life."

Charlie added: "I'm not at liberty to say [how I leave], and luckily I haven't read the scripts because I thought if I started then I knew I'd start talking about it."

Charlie added that she was leaving while she still had a spring in her step and a chance at a new chapter in life.


Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 

An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.