Paul Mescal is in shock over the popularity of Connell's chain.

Paul Mescal

Paul Mescal

The accessory worn by Paul's character Connell Waldron in TV series 'Normal People' has become so popular that it even has its own Instagram account with 175,000 followers and Paul can't understand it.

Speaking on 'The Ryan Tubridy Show' on RTÉ Radio One, he said: "It definitely wasn't on the list of things I thought people would notice. It's kind of grown arms and legs. It kind of became its own entity, and I'm raffling off one of my own chains for Pieta House."

Paul has donated one of his chains to raise money for the charity Pieta House and proceeds will go to Pieta's work in providing free therapy to those engaging in self-harm, with suicidal ideation, or bereaved by suicide.

The raffle has already raised almost 55,000 euro and Paul said: "I couldn't have imagined that response.

"It shows the popularity of the chain and the show itself. Obviously I'm over the moon, and eternally grateful to everybody who's donated."

Paul recently revealed he had a number of reasons for choosing Pieta House to donate to.

He said: "I am delighted to be able to help out Pieta by raffling off my chain that has taken on a following of its own since 'Normal People' hit television screens. Pieta is a cause very close to my heart, having experienced loss due to suicide in my local town while growing up.

"Episode 10 of Normal People also touches upon depression and suicidal ideation, so it seemed like a very special partnership to want to help those in similar situations. I want to play my part in helping sustain these free services across Ireland."

Paul has also helped to raise the profile of Irish sportswear company O'Neills after his character donned the brand's shorts on the show.

The 24-year-old actor has also been papped wearing the shorts in real life and he is bemused by their popularity.

He said: "It's hilarious. I'm aware that, sometimes on my way to the shops I'm being photographed.

"But, to be honest, there's no better item to be photographed in than a pair of Maynooth GAA shorts."