When Donna leaves him, Emmerdale’s Marlon Dingle turns to crime to win her back, reveals actor Mark Charnock!

Why does Donna leave Marlon and move back in with her mum?
“Because she’s had enough of living in the caravan on their house/building site. When she catches a cold and then the Dingles’ septic tank overflows, she decides she can’t take any more.”

How does Marlon feel about this?
“He’s absolutely crushed. He had all these plans about him and Donna building their dream house and feels he’s let her down by making her live in this dingy caravan with the Dingles.”

Couldn’t they rent somewhere or go a B&B?
“They can’t really afford it. The idea is that they spend as little money as possible so they can put everything into the house. Money’s very tight.”

So tight that Marlon resorts to desperate measures we hear…
“Yes. But not just desperate… reckless and stupid would be more to the point.”

What does he do?
“He agrees to go on the rob with Eli. At first he’s completely dismissive but he’s desperate for extra cash. It would pay for labourers for the house and he’d get Donna back sooner.”

Has he ever committed a crime before?
“I’m sure he must have done In his younger days. He’s a Dingle after all!”

Who does Eli plan to rob? “The Kings… which scares the pants off Marlon! He wants to back out but Eli says it’s too late.”

And what’s the grand plan?
“Marlon is to distract the security guard while Eli steals a truck from the haulage yard. He pretends his car has broken down and it’s all going quite well until his mobile rings and it’s Donna wondering where he is!”

What does he tell her?
“The wrong thing! He keeps with the ‘I’ve broken down’ lie and she says that her police shift’s just ending so she’ll come and help him! She arrives with her police partner just as Eli smashes through the gates in the stolen van.”

Caught red-handed then?
“No. It all happens so quickly that Eli gets away. But Marlon ends up having to give a witness statement.”

What will Donna do if she finds out?
“She’ll be horrified – that Marlon would involve himself in a crime and that he’d compromise her position in this way. There’s no way she could continue in the police force if he comes out.”

Where does he say the money’s come from?
“He tells her he won £1,000 on the horses and she’s so thrilled that he actually starts feeling a bit better.”

Could he be heading for a life of crime now?
“Marlon’s dismissive when Eli mentions ‘the next time’ but you can see he might be tempted. He doesn’t realise it, but he’s turning into a real Dingle again. He’s got £££ signs in his eyes and that’s not good…”