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Eric Pollard reveals Parkinson’s diagnosis in Emmerdale

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Eric Pollard reveals Parkinson’s diagnosis in Emmerdale

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In tonight’s episode of Emmerdale, viewers learned that Eric Pollard, played by the soap’s longest serving cast member, Chris Chittell, has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s, the fastest growing neurological condition in the world.

Chris Chittell:

“I feel really privileged to be given this storyline. Parkinson’s is indiscriminate, deceptive and wickedly unkind targeting so many.  I want to do this storyline justice for the most courageous of people who are having to bear the brunt of this condition.”

Eric confides in Mandy

Eric, a businessman, has had many ventures including a factory and B&B

In emotional scenes, Eric tearfully confided in Mandy (Lisa Riley) about what he had been going through recently, and how terrified he was feeling as he looked to his future. He swore Mandy to secrecy, determined to go it alone. 

When devising and researching the storyline, Emmerdale has worked closely with the charity Parkinson’s UK, who will continue to support the production team to give Eric’s story a realistic and authentic depiction whilst creating awareness of the condition and how it affects those afflicted. 

Chris has has been a regular as Eric since 1986

Eric’s son David arrived in the village in 2006

Chief Executive of Parkinson’s UK, Caroline Rassell:

“Parkinson’s is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world, but is still misunderstood by many. A diagnosis can be a blow, forcing people to confront a future different from the one they had imagined. We hope that Eric’s storyline will increase awareness and understanding of a condition that around 153,000 people in the UK live with, and encourage discussions about the impact it has on those living with Parkinson’s and their loved ones. 

“It’s a privilege to be assisting the Emmerdale team in portraying Eric’s journey, and Parkinson’s UK is here to support anyone affected by the condition through our helpline, local groups and website.” 

Parkinson’s affects around 153,000 people in the UK and every hour two more people are diagnosed. For more information and support visit www.parkinsons.org.uk or call Parkinson’s UK’s free, confidential helpline on 0808 800 0303.

Emmerdale airs weeknights on ITV1, STV, STV Player and ITVX from 7.30pm

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