Emmerdale star Clive Hornby, who plays Jack Sugden, has taken a break from the soap because of ill health.
Clive Hornby became the third actor to play Jack Sugden in 1980
"We can confirm that Clive is unwell but fully intends to return to work," an Emmerdale spokesperson said, but refused to give details of the illness.
The actor stopped filming last week but will be seen on screen until February.
The 63-year-old has been in Emmerdale for 28 years after joining on a three-month contract and is the soap's longest-serving character.