Emmerdale star Lucy Pargeter has reflected on her character Chas Dingle's "heartbreaking" baby loss storyline, explaining that she found the baby Grace plot one of the hardest storylines she's filmed during her time on the soap.
Lucy, who has played Chas on the ITV soap since 2002, featured in a big storyline throughout 2018 as Chas and her partner Paddy (Dominic Brunt) learned that their unborn baby had bilateral renal agenesis and wouldn't survive long after her birth.
The storyline saw Chas and Paddy agree to see the pregnancy to full term, and the couple later welcomed their baby and spent the precious little time they could with her before her tragic death.
"We had a meeting initially with the producers and they said you're going to get pregnant and then they explained the whole situation that Grace wouldn't survive," she recalled.
"It was heartbreaking to think that we were going to have to do this storyline. I've done some hard episodes in the past, but I'd say this was the top one."
Lucy's co-star Mark Charnock, who plays Marlon Dingle, also recalled the plot and heaped praise on both Lucy and Dominic, who plays Paddy, adding: "It was an extraordinary feat of months of them tearing themselves to pieces as character."
But the stars of the soap couldn't help but reflect on the baby's very Dingle-like entrance to the village, as she was born while mum Chas was locked in the bathroom of the Woolpack with Marlon, who then had to deliver the baby – and Lucy was determined to make sure the scene was realistic.
"There was one scene where Marlon was supposed to be looking at the head end, and I said, 'Can we make it more real?'" Lucy recalled.
"[I said] 'I'll put my spanks on... get down there Mark, let me put my leg on your shoulder and let's do it.'"
Emmerdale currently airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 7pm, while Emmerdale: Family Trees continues next Thursday (August 27) at 7pm on ITV.
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