Where is Emmerdale star Charlie Hardwick now after starring as Val Pollard for 12 years

Charlie Hardwick became a well-loved character in Emmerdale as she played the role of Val Pollard for 12 years, that was until a helicopter crashed into the village and she was written out of the soap.

Looking for a new venture, the TV favourite went on to star in Channel 4's Ackley Bridge as Sue Carp and is her last TV appearance. The 63 year old has also appeared in the children's drama Byker Grove and even had a role in Billy Elliott.

Let's take a closer look at her impressive career from the horror Emmerdale exit storyline to a comedy role…

The soap star who hails from Wallsend, North Tyneside first joined Emmerdale in 2004 playing the role of Val Pollard – the sister of Diane Sugden. She was at the heart of huge storylines and was married to Eric Pollard.

During her time in the Yorkshire village, she was nominated seven times at the British Soap Awards and in 2006 won Best Comedy Performance. Speaking to Digital Spy about her win at the time, Charlie said: "I feel really chuffed. I think you're supposed to be really humble about these things. I've got no idea what's going to happen with Val, I don't even read the next block of scripts ahead!"

She added: "I love my job and I'm so lucky to have such a fantastic character to play."

In 2015, the actress left Emmerdale as she was written out of the storyline following a catastrophe in the village. Her character was killed after being trapped in a House of Mirrors following a helicopter crash.

Speaking about her soap departure on Loose Women in 2016, she said: "I’d like to thank all the people who watch Emmerdale who have been so lovely to me over the years and who have enjoyed the ups and downs of Eric and Val.

"I thought, let’s have a chance at another chapter in my life, you know just when it’s time to go." The actress also revealed to The Mirror that she had lived out of a suitcase during her 12-year stint in Emmerdale having to commute from her home in Newcastle to Leeds every week.

Since leaving, Val made several appearances in Emmerdale as a ghost to husband Eric Pollard and in Robert Sugden’s dream on the Christmas episode in 2017. It wasn't long before Charlie returned to our screens and joined Channel 4's comedy-drama Ackley Bridge as teacher Sue Carp in 2019.

Eagle-eyed viewers were quick to spot Charlie in her Ackley Bridge role as director of pupil behaviour, where she starred alongside Downton Abbey actor Rob James-Collier and EastEnders star Jo Joyner. The series, which first aired in 2017, is set in the fictional Yorkshire mill town of Ackley Bridge and follows the lives of pupils and staff who are affected by the merger of two schools from British and Asian communities.

Charlie joined the cast in series three as Sue Carp who was not happy about the transfer to Ackley Bridge and did not care about her role even though she was part of senior management. Her character was found sleeping at her desk and told colleagues she was only working there until she was able to retire.

Charlie has also starred in roles on stage including Clear White Light at Live Theatre in Newcastle in the role of Maddie.

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