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'Emmerdale' Kelli Hollis: 'Ali plot research surprised me'

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Kelli Hollis of Emmerdale at the British Soap Awards 2012

© PA Images / Ian West/PA Wire

Emmerdale star Kelli Hollis has admitted that she was "surprised" by the research she did for her character Ali Spencer's literacy storyline.

Ali recently confided in her loved ones by revealing that she cannot read or write, having hid her problems for a number of years.

Hollis today (May 2) told Lorraine that she tried to better understand Ali's situation by posing as an adult with literacy problems. However, she was left frustrated by the lack of support on offer.

The actress explained: "I was really surprised, actually. I did a little bit of research and made a few phone call enquiries and I was actually a little bit disappointed, because I was making these calls and getting referred to websites.

"I didn't say who I was, I just said, 'I'm looking for some courses'. I was getting sent in all different directions and referred to websites and somebody actually said, 'I can send you some leaflets'.

"I had to say, 'I won't be able to read the leaflets if they come'. So I was a little bit disappointed."

Hollis added that she hopes the current generation of young people are receiving more support than Ali did when she was at school.

She said: "These days with mobile phones and computers, if a kid is struggling with their reading and writing, hopefully that will be picked up on a little bit sooner."

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