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'Oaks plot to air despite Clyde suicides

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'Oaks plot to air despite Clyde suicides
Channel 4 has announced that it will go ahead with the transmission of a Hollyoaks episode featuring a suicide attempt, despite similarities to a recent real-life incident in Scotland.

This evening's instalment of the teen soap will focus on the dramatic climax to schizophrenic student Newt's (Nico Mirallegro) suicide pact with new friend Rae (Alice Barlow). The troubled character's plotline sees him jumping from an abandoned building into cold dockland water below after deciding to take his own life while on the run.

The broadcast will come days after 15-year-old Neve Lafferty and 14-year-old Georgia Rowe died after jumping into the River Clyde from the Erskine Bridge.

A Channel 4 spokeswoman said today: "Any similarities are entirely coincidental and we have carefully considered how best to proceed. We feel it is appropriate to continue with the transmission of these episodes as this is not a one-off programme but an established and long-running series.

"The audience will be familiar with the character of Newt and this plotline, which has been both trailed and promoted, has been developing over a number of weeks.

"Hollyoaks has a strong track record of dealing with sensitive issues, and the transmission will be followed by a programme support announcement directing viewers to a 24-hour helpline."

The representative added that Channel 4 has not received any viewer complaints about the storyline thus far.

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