Emmerdale's Leah Bracknell writes emotional 'cancer manifesto'

Tobi Akingbade

Former Emmerdale actress Leah Bracknell has written an emotional 'cancer manifesto' following her heartbreaking diagnosis.

The star – who played Zoe Tate in the ITV soap – was diagnosed with stage 4 terminal lung cancer in 2016.

She has already defied odds, revealing last year that she had lived 14 months longer than was expected after receiving her diagnosis.

In her blog, Bracknell calls herself a 'cancer rebel' as she details the manifesto on her website Something Beginning With C.

She wrote inspiring statements, including: "I REBEL against the fear of cancer, against pity from others and myself, against being defined by cancer, and against being bullied by cancer.

"I EMBRACE the strength of my spirit and every opportunity that cancer gives me to learn, to grow, to expand.

"I embrace the path on which I find myself, embrace gratitude and above all else I embrace LIFE

"For I am a CANCER REBEL with a fierce heart, an independent mind, a warrior spirit, and an ocean of desire to keep on keeping on and making a difference and making a noise as long as there is sweet breath in my body.

"To LIFE. Long and sweet may it be for us all".

Leah also added: "Time is running out. I reject the expected notion of being passive or a patient or of being a victim, and I am prepared to try almost anything to “save” my life."

The manifesto comes after her trip to Trew Fields - a cancer awareness festival - where she also hit the stage to talk about her journey and battle against the disease.

She told the crowd: "I wrote The Cancer Rebel's Manifesto for life as a reminder to myself what it takes to keep your head above water.

"To thrive, and to keep on keepin' on while living with cancer and defying expectation every single day."

Bracknell starred as Zoe from 1993 to 2005 and was part of the legendary Tate family, as well as being the first lesbian character in a British soap.

The star, who is currently writing a memoir about her cancer battle, revealed her lung cancer diagnosis on her fundraising page, explaining she’d had the diagnosis after merely feeling breathless.