Lisa Riley returning to Emmerdale
13 November 2018 - 10:00 AM

Lisa Riley returning to Emmerdale

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Lisa Riley will return to "Emmerdale" this Christmas.

The 42-year-old actress is to reprise her role as Mandy Dingle on the ITV soap after 17 years away from the show - during which she has appeared in "Fat Friends", "Waterloo Road" and "Three Girls", among other programmes - and she is surprise to be heading back to the Dales after so long away.

She said: "I could not be happier to be returning in the New Year to Emmerdale. It's something I never thought would happen after 17 years and I am so interested to see what trouble Mandy is capable of causing.

"But mostly being back with all my old friends, it's like I've never been away."

Mandy will return with a secret as part of a self-contained storyline for Lisa, but she will still have plenty of the "joie de vivre" she had during her last stint in the Dales.

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"Emmerdale" producer Kate Brooks added: "Iconic Mandy Dingle returns to the village carrying a secret that turns lives upside down.

"She's a character bursting with fun who certainly ruffles a few feathers during her short stint back in the village, and she clearly hasn't lost any of the joie de vivre that made Mandy so popular and enjoyable to watch.

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"We're delighted to welcome Lisa back to Emmerdale."

This news comes after Lisa admitted earlier this year she would consider returning to the soap when she is 60.

She said: "Maybe it is my pension fund, maybe there will be one day when I am 60 and it's my pension."

Lisa initially portrayed Mandy from 1995 to 2001, during which the character had feelings for vet Paddy Kirk (Dominic Brunt) but was paid by his mother to marry her cousin Butch Dingle (Paul Loughran).

However, she couldn't ignore her feelings for Paddy and later started an affair with him which led the Dingles disowning her only to let her back into their lives when Paddy delivered their daughter Belle Dingle - who is now played by Eden Taylor-Draper - on Christmas Day in 1998 in a pig sty.

Mandy later married Paddy but started another affair with a college lecturer before coming clean to poor Paddy, who ended their marriage.

She initially departed the village for London to live with her pal Kelly Windsor (Adele Silva) before returning to win Paddy back only to find him happy with Emily Dingle (Kate McGregor).

He has long since moved on from Mandy but recently suffered fresh heartache when he and his significant other Chas Dingle (Lucy Pargeter) lost their newborn baby Grace, shortly after she was born.

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