Former Neighbours star Craig McLachlan believes ‘cancel culture’ is the reason why he wasn’t invited to appear in Thursday night’s finale. McLachlan, 56, who played heart-throb Henry Ramsay in the ’80s, was cleared of indecent assault charges two years ago, yet believes he was snubbed from the finale due to his unfairly tarnished reputation.

‘Henry’s dead mother is being reincarnated for the final episode but cancel culture won’t allow her son Henry to appear or even be acknowledged,’ a spokesperson for McLachlan told The Sun on Wednesday. 

Meanwhile, McLachlan’s on-screen sister Charlene (Kylie Minogue) and stepfather Harold Bishop (Ian Smith) will return for the finale, as will his character’s mother Madge (Anne Charleston), who died on the show but will appear as a ghost.

‘What Craig and his partner [Vanessa Scammell] have endured over the past four-and-a-half years only to come out the other side and be confronted by, among other things, the attempted permanent erasing of his part in Neighbours history is devastating,’ they continued. 

The Neighbours finale would have been McLachlan’s his first acting gig since he was found not guilty of indecently assaulting actors during the running of The Rocky Horror Show musical in 2014.

‘Craig was not invited to take part in the closing episode or indeed to contribute in any way to the end of Neighbours.’  McLachlan portrayed Henry between 1987 to 1989 and won three Logie Awards for the role, including the gong for Most Popular Actor. 

McLachlan had maintained his alleged offending while working on the production was no more inappropriate than a cricketer giving a teammate a pat on the bum. In a 105-page decision, Melbourne Magistrate Belinda Wallington found McLachlan not guilty of all charges.

‘I want it noted the following: The four complainants were brave and honest witnesses. I was not persuaded that there was evidence of collusion between the complainants,’ Ms Wallington said. ‘I was not persuaded that there was evidence of motive, or that the complaints were made for reason of career ambition or any other such reason.’ 

Ms Wallington said it was McLachlan’s ‘egotistical self entitled sense of humour’ that led him to believe others would either not mind or find his behaviour funny. During the case, McLachlan endured months of scrutiny which saw him and his partner Vanessa Scammell  forced to make their way through media packs outside of a Melbourne court.

He dropped the defamation suit in May this year on the day the first of 11 women were due to give evidence, citing the toll it had taken on his mental health and family as the reason.It is understood McLachlan has racked up legal bills of more than $3million.

McLachlan subsequently sued the ABC, Sydney Morning Herald and actor Christie Whelan Browne for defamation in relation to publishing claims he’d touched, kissed and groped actresses without permission in the Rocky Horror stage production, Neighbours, City Homicide, and The Doctor Blake Mysteries. 

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