Lisa Riley is returning to the ITV Yorkshire based soap for a short festive stint.

“I could not be happier to be returning in the New Year to Emmerdale. It’s something I never thought would happen after 17 years and I am so interested to see what trouble Mandy is capable of causing. But mostly being back with all my old friends, it’s like I’ve never been away.” – Lisa Riley

Loose Women regular and actress Lisa Riley is making a return to Emmerdale for the first time in nearly two decades. This New Year viewers will be treated to the return of her character, Mandy Dingle, back in the Emmerdale village for a self-contained storyline.  

It’s been 17 years since Emmerdale viewers last saw Mandy Dingle in the ITV Yorkshire produced series. Being a Dingle and the ex-wife of both Butch and Paddy, Mandy was always at the centre of high drama in the village.

On the run up to Mandy’s return, life in the village is relatively calm. Former husband Paddy moved on a long time ago and is concentrating on his relationship with Chas Dingle and partnership in the veterinary practice. The rest of the Dingle family are living fairly harmoniously – well as quietly as Dingles can! So what drama will be in store now this iconic member of the family is making her return?

Related Story: Lisa Riley recalls Emmerdale co-star destroyed her credit card

Mandy arrived in Emmerdale in 1995 to live with her uncle Zak Dingle, having been disowned by her father, Caleb. She became a popular part of the community thanks to landing a job as a barmaid in the local, The Woolpack. It’s here where her feisty personality makes her a perfect choice as a barmaid. She was wooed by vet Paddy Kirk and after an on-off relationship the pair planned to marry, however Paddy’s mother disapproved of their union and paid Mandy to marry her cousin Butch instead.

Following her divorce from Butch in 1999, Mandy married Paddy but it wasn’t to last, following an affair she left the village in 2001, making a brief return the following year in the hope of reuniting with Paddy, however he had moved on.

In 1996 Lisa Riley won Most Popular Newcomer at the second National Television Awards for her Emmerdale part in the then Yorkshire Television saga.

“Iconic Mandy Dingle returns to the village carrying a secret that turns lives upside down.  She’s a character bursting with fun who certainly ruffles a few feathers during her short stint back in the village, and she clearly hasn’t lost any of the joie de vivre that made Mandy so popular and enjoyable to watch. We’re delighted to welcome Lisa back to Emmerdale.” – Producer, Kate Brooks

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