There is heartbreak and tragedy in Hollyoaks when this much-loved character decides they no longer want to live....
There is tragedy in store for Hollyoaks favourite Kyle Kelly when the character, played by Adam Rickitt, decides to take his own life.
Viewers have seen Kyle battling depression and also trying to help Darren Osborne (Ashley Taylor Dawson) who is also suffering with depression.
Kyle has recently been Darren’s rock but in the run up to his own wedding, it’s Kyle who is suffering the most and before his big day to Nancy Osborne (Jessica Fox) he is overwhelmed with a new darkness and decides to end his life.
Executive producer Bryan Kirkwood said, "Hollyoaks’ writing team have been laying the building blocks of Darren and Kyle’s individual stories for some time, carefully exploring the nuances that comes from two men living with depression in two very different ways.
"There is no face to male suicide, and we wanted to highlight the ways in which depression can manifest itself with two of our much-loved characters."
Speaking about the harrowing storyline which comes to head next Monday June 8 on E4 and is then repeated on June 9 on C4, former pop star Adam, 41, revealed that he has struggled with depression and mental health issues himself in the past .
He said, "Mental health’s something I’ve been campaigning about for over 20 years. I’ve been an advocate for discussing mental health and also a counsellor. I’ve also gone through stuff in my own life so I feel well versed to be able to give a voice to what’s an incredibly important message."
Actor, singer and former model, Adam, who started his soap career in Coronation Street in 1997 playing Nick Tilsley, first joined Hollyoaks in 2017.
He continued, "When I first heard about the storyline, I was excited as an actor to be able to portray such a dramatic journey, and pride that the team had entrusted me to do it.
"There was also a sense of personal fear. Like all too many I had to walk a similar path in my lifetime and the idea of revisiting that, even in the world of fiction, was slightly daunting.
"In truth though it became an incredibly empowering experience. The sensitivity and heart that the writers put into the story really shone through, and at a time like now, more than ever, I think we need to be highlighting just this sort of issue."
Speaking about his departure from Hollyoaks, Adam, who married Good Morning Britain presenter Katy Fawcett in 2014, said, "As sad as I am to say goodbye to Kyle, I have loved being a part of Hollyoaks. It's been a fantastic show to work on.
"To be able to leave telling a story that is so important and so challenging is more than I could ever have asked for, and like me, I hope viewers will find strength in its telling."
While the Hollyoaks storyline began before the pandemic, charities have stressed the current importance of highlighting suicide prevention.
Angela Samata, suicide prevention campaigner, has praised Hollyoaks for bringing a focus to the issue.
She said: "By telling Kyle and Darren’s story Hollyoaks is playing an essential role in raising awareness, challenging the stigma around suicide and encouraging a demographic at risk to reach out for help and support.
"At the Hub Of Hope, we've seen a 230% increase in the use of our free App during lockdown. That tells me that people are reaching out and looking for the right help and support for themselves and others.”
The Hollyoaks cast and producers visited and worked closely with James’ Place, a unique centre for emergency male mental health, based in Liverpool.
Suicide is still the biggest killer of men under 50 and the Samaritans report that men are less likely to seek professional help for their mental health and three times more likely to take their own lives.
Jane Boland, Centre Manager at James’ Place said: "We are so pleased that Hollyoaks consulted with us to create this storyline. At James’ Place, we know that men facing a suicidal crisis can get out of it with the right help.
"It’s important for all of us to feel confident to ask straightforward questions when someone we care about is struggling. We believe that no one should face a suicidal crisis alone. If you are feeling hopeless, reach out, help is available."
Hollyoaks currently airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first-look episodes airing on E4 at 7pm.
There are also classic episodes called Hollyoaks Favourites being aired on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays on E4.
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