Emmerdale: who is Ryan Stocks? Everything you need to know about Charity’s son

The lowdown on the character and actor James Moore

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The revelation that Emmerdale‘s Charity Dingle has a secret son is one of the biggest soap twists of 2018 that saw Ryan Stocks reunited with his long-lost mum and discovering the shocking truth about his past. This week, Ryan is back on screen but clashing with Charity over her reluctance to tell the Dingles about his existence, while his evil father Mark Bails tries to discredit her version of events with his lurid lies.

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Here’s a quick refresher of who Ryan is, the emotional backstory and a tease about where this sensational storyline goes next…

Who is Ryan Stocks?
Ryan was conceived in 1990 when 14-year-old Charity was forced into sex work and fell pregnant after being  groomed and raped by corrupt cop Bails and his sleazy sex ring mates. Keeping her pregnancy secret and drinking heavily throughout, the terrified young mum gave birth but abandoned her baby thinking he’d died when he flatlined when he was just minutes old and fled the hospital – unbeknown to Charity her son survived and was raised by kindly midwife Irene Stocks.

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When did viewers first know about him?
Back in May Charity confessed her baby trauma to girlfriend Vanessa Woodfield after Bails, now a DI, became the face of a campaign to help vulnerable sex workers. Unable to hide her ordeal or deal with her abuser’s hypocrisy any more she reported the historic abuse to the police, but the investigation into the assault revealed Charity’s child had survived. Mother and child eventually met in June, when Charity told Ryan the truth about his conception and urged him to provide a DNA sample to prove Bails was his father in order to strengthen the case against the perverted police officer.

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How did Ryan react?
It was too much for the 27-year-old to take and he initially rejected a relationship with his biological mother, but the pair eventually began to form a tentative bond, much to adopted mum Irene’s concern. Ryan has become a regular visitor to the village and has struck up an unlikely friendship with bad boy Ross Barton, but the Dingles still don’t know his true identity and Charity’s attempts to tell the family have so far been scuppered.

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Has Ryan met his dad?
Yes, earlier this week Bails paid a visit to Ryan ahead of his upcoming trial for his sick crimes against teenage Charity, wanting to put forward his side of the story. Charity got wind of the meeting but was surprised when Ryan agreed to hear the cop’s version of events. As Bails insisted their relationship was consensual and Charity is lying, he played on Ryan’s insecurity Charity was ashamed of him, not just because he’s a reminder of her painful past but as he was born with cerebral palsy. But Bails was clearly messing with Ryan’s mind to stop him badmouthing his dad at the trial…

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Who plays Ryan?
Newcomer James Moore made his Emmerdale debut in June. He has the same disability as his character, and praises the show for representing people living with cerebral palsy. “I think it’s fantastic they are hiring disabled actors to play disabled characters, it really helps us as actors bring the most to our role because we have that experience. We have the knowledge and truth to connect to our characters and give it a fresh angle.”

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What happens next in his storyline?
On Wednesday 29 August, Charity sensationally pulled the plug on taking Bails to court just weeks before the case, following his manipulation of Ryan and a sinister warning she’d never convince a jury of her innocence. Does this mean Bails will go free? And will Charity introduce Ryan to the rest of the Dingles and prove she’s not ashamed of her biological child and the tragic circumstances in which he was conceived?

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