Emmerdale aired another surprise twist in tonight's episode (March 29) as it was revealed that Faith Dingle had a double mastectomy after battling breast cancer.
Faith's harrowing secret became apparent at the end of Wednesday's visit to the Dales, which had seen her desperately try to fix her fractured relationship with daughter Chas.
Faith and Chas ended up sharing an emotional heart to heart after being thrown together by Debbie – who was fed up with their constant bickering.
The pair pulled no punches as they opened up about the past, with Chas being particularly vocal as she blamed Faith for her son Aaron's ordeal at the hands of his evil father Gordon.
But just as they finally agreed to put the past behind them, Faith made the situation worse by recoiling when Chas went to hug her.
As Chas demanded an explanation for her strange behaviour, Faith left her daughter even more devastated with her nonsensical excuses leaving her to believe that she simply hadn't changed at all.
However, the closing moments of the episode told a very different story as Faith removed her bra and broke down at the sight of her scars in the mirror –revealing that she'd had a double mastectomy prior to turning up in the village.
Viewers will have to keep watching to see if Faith chooses to share the truth with her family, but Sally Dexter – who plays her – is thrilled that Emmerdale is tackling the important storyline.
She said: "I am delighted we are covering this story. It shows the many people who are dealing with this situation that they are not alone, they need not be ashamed, and that more and more woman live and thrive with this condition.
"I think Faith always wanted to return to the village and missed being part of her family, but nearly losing her life made her do something about it.
"It certainly shows a serious side to her, but she will always be a lot of fun. Knowing she has had these down sides means she is owed the 'up' times. She doesn't do self pity – she believes life is for living, especially having nearly lost it."
Speaking about Brigitte Coles – who played Faith's body double in tonight's scene – Sally said: "When I met her, I had no idea what to expect but I wasn't expecting to have the laugh that we did.
"She is a very funny woman – she is savvy and sassy and it was a real pleasure to meet her. She has had her struggle, and still does, but she's fighting through them. She's an inspiration."
Emmerdale airs weeknights at 7pm on ITV, with an extra episode at 8pm on Thursdays.
Digital Spy Soap Scoop video – hit play below for all the latest Emmerdale spoilers, as Ashley sadly passes away and Aaron gets released from prison.
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