He’s one of soap’s longest ever running characters with a list of crimes and enemies longer than his arm, but Stefan Dennis, who’s played ruthless Paul Robinson in Neighbours for a whopping 30 years, has said never before has his character hit rock bottom like this. 

Last week viewers saw Paul sentenced to 18 years in prison for manslaughter after he was found guilty of causing the explosion at Lassiters hotel that left Doug and Josh Willis dead.

Speaking exclusively to What’s On TV, dad of three, Stefan said: “He’s a completely crushed man. It’s the first time EVER that I can remember him totally giving up. He’s surrendered himself to a life in prison and he thinks he’s never going to get out of there!”

Sadly for Paul things are going to get a whole lot worse this week when he’s rounded on by a group of inmates intent on making his life even more hellish. 

Stefan, 57, said: “All the guys start closing in on him and he actually thinks: ‘This is it, this is what prison life’s going to be like for the next 14 years, I’m going to get beaten up on a regular basis.'”

There’s a glimmer of hope when Paul is stunned to hear a familiar voice. Stefan says: “It’s actually Gary Canning. It’s a really great twist because you’ve got to remember Gary is actually in prison because of Paul!”

So will Gary come to Paul’s rescue? Don’t bet on it! Find out what’s in store for Paul next on Neighbours Monday-Friday at 1.45pm and 5.30pm on Channel 5 .

Watch our interview with Stefan Dennis, above… and click here to remind yourself of Paul’s biggest scandals!

And coming later this week… Stefan chats exclusively to WOTV.co.uk about working with his Scottish wife Gail Easdale who plays Neighbours’ Julie Quill, the modern day stress of raising teenage children and why he’d love to be on the new series of Top Gear!