Ashley will lose his battle with dementia but new boss Iain MacLeod has asked John to stay until next spring, as he wants to give Ashley’s storyline “its due”.
John told the Daily Star Sunday: “The storyline is going to be extended a little bit. That was the first thing I wanted to ask Iain MacLeod.
“I had a meeting with him and said, ‘Iain, I just need to know when I’m going, my agent’s chomping at the bit’.
“Iain did say he wanted to get as many chapters, as he put it, out of it [the storyline] as he can. He also wants to give the story its due.”
Speaking about Ashley’s re-marriage to ex-wife Laurel (Charlotte Bellamy), John added: “What we’re dealing with here is a love story where you know there is only one ending for Ashley and Laurel.”
Laurel and Ashleyon their bittersweet wedding day
John previously revealed he felt incredibly honoured producers chose him to portray such a hard-hitting and emotional storyline.
He said: “It’s a big challenge, so it’s not a very comfortable journey for an actor but it is an exciting one.
“I’m getting to explore things that you never normally do. I know it seems wrong but I’m actually thoroughly enjoying it.”
Emmerdale continues on ITV, Monday, April 18, 7.00pm.