Emmerdale’s Dominic Brunt on ‘appreciating’ life after tragic scenes

Emmerdale: Paddy Kirk says goodbye to Eve Dingle

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Village vet Paddy Kirk (played by Dominic Brunt) has been far from his old self on Emmerdale since sinking into a deep depression in recent months. Fans of the ITV show will recall the heartbreaking scenes where Paddy almost took his own life. Actor Dominic has opened up to Express.co.uk about appreciating his life after exploring his character’s mental health battle. 

Speaking to Express.co.uk and other publications about men’s mental health and his character’s pain, Dominic said: “No matter what you are going through, whether it’s a mental bump or a terrible lifestyle choice, the one thing which will help you, whether it ends with medication or not, is talking.”

When asked if he had been speaking to anyone who has been in Paddy’s shoes, he said: “I have yes, whether it is talking to Andy’s Man Club or doing my own research, it’s been incredible. 

“Not only has it been inspirational but it’s been pitch black and dark and it’s made me appreciate my life.”

The beloved soap actor, who has been on Emmerdale since 1997, opened up about keeping in check of his own mental health.

When life is getting a little hectic he cuts out alcohol and caffeine and tries to get plenty of sleep. 

He explained of acting out Paddy’s suffering: “I just tried my best, I don’t know. I couldn’t even let myself open a little door to the black dogs these people experience, it’s just, I was pretending. 

“The script and the dialogue were so good and the journey there was so clear, it was almost easy to do. 

“However, the emotion that you had to visit had to be shaken immediately. 

“I felt supported but I had an hour’s drive home so I put the radio on and made sure I got some sleep that night. 

“I’m not suffering like that – I’m a stupid actor with a script in my hand. 

“However, I was privileged and honoured to serve that story.”

He added: “But it didn’t touch the sides for me because I know what it is like for someone to really go through that.”

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On Friday’s instalment of Emmerdale, many of the soap’s male characters gathered together in The Woolpack for a rare heart-to-heart about their own mental health struggles. 

The lock-in was organised by Marlon Dingle (Mark Charnock) who has been through a difficult year after suffering from a stroke last spring. 

Liam Cavanagh (Jonny McPherson) revealed he had once overdosed during his time studying medicine at university. 

Meanwhile, Cain Dingle (Jeff Hordley) aired his fears that Paddy would attempt to take his own life again. 

Paddy eventually joined the men at the village pub as they addressed their own insecurities and concerns. 

To offer some light relief, Sam Dingle (James Hooton) dropped his trousers and asked doctor Liam for an impromptu examination after finding a lump on his testicle. 

The episode left viewers in tears, with many taking to Twitter to praise scriptwriters for shining a light on men’s mental health struggles. 

Emmerdale airs on weeknights at 7.30pm on ITV and ITVX. 

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