Emmerdale’s Ryan Hawley opens up about ‘emotional’ departure from the soap

Robert and Aaron leave in Emmerdale

Robron will soon be parted as the actor is bowing out

Ryan Hawley, who plays Robert Sugden in Emmerdale, has opened up about his impending departure from the soap, and admitted that it will be difficult to say goodbye.

Show bosses confirmed in the Summer that the actor had decided to quit the soap, and Robert is set to bow out in the coming weeks.

Says Ryan: “I will miss the show massively; it has been a huge part of my life for the last few years. I love working here, I love the people that I work with, and it’s going to be very emotional leaving.”

The 34 year old joined the soap in 2014. He’s the fourth actor to have played Robert, and replaced Karl Davies, who played the character from 2001 to 2009.

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Robert returned to the Dales as the fiancé of businesswoman Chrissie White, and quickly became the soap’s main protagonist; being responsible for the death of former lover and sister-in-law Katie Sugden in 2015, and later trying to see off Paddy Kirk by burying him alive in a grain silo.

Robron Wedding Emmerdale

Fans have fallen in love with Robron

But it was his relationship with Aaron Dingle that fans really loved. ‘Robron’s’ turbulent on-off relationship became hugely popular, and the two men finally tied the knot in last year.

Speaking of his personal highlights, Ryan says that it’s the memorable Hotten bypass crash in 2016 that will live longest in the memory.

“I was so lucky to be involved in the big crash scenes in 2016,” he adds. “The underwater scenes that we filmed at Pinewood studios were fantastic to do. Me and Danny (Miller, who plays Aaron) got to have a lot of fun there, swimming in a tank.

“There were so many special effects in the crash sequence that week. It was probably the biggest thing Emmerdale has ever done, and it was amazing to be a part of it.

“I have been very lucky to be involved in some very ambitious stunts and storylines but that was the stand out one. Everyone pulled together. We were up against the odds but I really think we managed to pull it off.”

Emmerdale continues on ITV.

Alison Slade
Soaps Editor

Alison Slade has over 20 years of experience as a TV journalist and has spent the vast majority of that time as Soap Editor of TV Times magazine. 

She is passionate about the ability of soaps to change the world by presenting important, issue-based stories about real people in a relatable way.

There are few soap actors that she hasn’t interviewed over the years, and her expertise in the genre means she has been called upon as a judge numerous times for The British Soap Awards and the BAFTA TV Awards.

When she is not writing about soaps, watching soaps, or interviewing people who are in soaps, she loves going to the theatre, taking a long walk or pottering about at home, obsessing over Farrow and Ball paint.