Coronation Street aired some heartbreaking scenes tonight - as Billy finally learned of Paul's Motor Neurone Disease diagnosis.
Paul was diagnosed with the disease earlier this year but refused to tell anyone including his partner Billy and only confided in Dee-Dee about what was going on. He then found himself doing all he could to earn money, including agreeing to steal a car, which he was caught doing and thus had to face a magistrate in court to get his sentence.
He was told he could face a custodial sentence for what he had done, with Dee-Dee eventually convincing him to tell the courts about his MND diagnosis in the hope it would mean he would not be sent to prison.
However, in a twist, Billy showed up to the court - when he finally learned of what Paul had been hiding. He devastatingly watched on, in tears, as Paul was given a suspended sentence after his health issues were laid bare.
He made his way over to him after the hearing and reassured him that he'd always be there for him, and the pair sat down later to discuss what it meant for their future - as Paul heartbreakingly admitted he was very terrified.
Fans of the ITV soap were emotional as Billy hugged Paul and told him he'd always be by his side, as they both struggled with what all this meant for them going forward, whilst Bernie came by to call Paul out about his decision not to go to Gemma's wedding.
Peter Ash - who plays Paul - had previously said of the tough diagnosis for his character: "Paul is completely blindsided by the diagnosis and he decides to keep it from his family and friends as he tries to come to terms with the news.
"I knew very little about MND before embarking on the storyline and I am hugely grateful to the MND Association for all their help and support. For any actor playing a role which examines a real life issue or condition there comes a huge sense of responsibility and we are aware that some people watching this storyline are experiencing it in reality, it is their life."
He admitted he had "mixed feelings" over his exit - with it being such a big storyline.
"I was called into the producer's office late last year, and he said we've got this very big storyline for you, which will be a great thing to do, but it will mean an eventual exit. I had mixed feelings obviously," he said, "I'll be sad to leave the show.
"It's an amazing job, I've met fantastic people. I'll be sad to leave but at the same time, I'm quite happy to be involved in such a powerful storyline which will hopefully bring awareness to it. It's a double edged sword."2023-05-26T20:03:29Z dg43tfdfdgfd