The actor passed away last year while still part of the cast.

Richard Thorp with Frazer Hines as Alan Turner and Joe Sugden in Emmerdale Farm.

Emmerdale bosses have unveiled details of a new storyline that will pay tribute to the late Richard thorp.

The actor – who played Alan Turner for over 30 years – passed away in May at the age of 81. Thorp made his debut as Alan in 1982 and following the death of Clive Hornby in 2008 became the soap’s longest serving cast member.

Initially introduced as a villainous character over the years Turner mellowed and became a pillar of the Emmerdale community which included a spell as landlord of the village centre point – The Woolpack Inn.

The tribute storyline sees Alan pass away with his daughter Steph – played by Lorraine Chase – returning for his funeral.

The character of Steph is currently serving time in prison for murdering her brother Terence, of which she is innocent. Steph will be escorted back to the village by prison guards in a police car.

In 1991 Richard’s character of Alan Turner took over The Woolpack Inn, putting him in the centre of the action until 1999.

Happy times, Diana Davies as Caroline Bates and Richard as Alan in the late 1980s.

l was devastated when l heard the news that my dear friend, Richard Thorp had died. He was a wonderful, joyous man, a great actor, and l felt privileged to have worked with him so closely.

When Emmerdale rang me to ask if l would consider coming back to guest at his character Alan, my on-screen dad’s funeral, I was over joyed, I just wish with all my heart that the circumstances were different. – Lorraine Chase

Alan’s long time friend Betty Eagleton (Paula Tilbrook) will be the first to learn of his death after calling up to his bedroom and realising Alan is not responding.

Alan’s funeral will be organised by Victoria Sugden (Isabel Hodgins) who does her best to pull out all the stops to give this village legend the best farewell possible.

Alan Turner was so important to Emmerdale and we felt it was right to give his character a proper send off.  It will be emotional as both the character and Richard are sorely missed and will be for a long time to come. – Emmerdale producer, Kate Oates

The tribute storyline has been devised in consultation with Thorp’s family and is expected to transmit in late October.

Richard records a scene for Emmerdale in 1991 with the ‘Hells Angels of Yorkshire’. Richard was a huge fan of motorbikes.
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