Emmerdale star Mimi Slinger has revealed that it was her decision to leave the soap as part of a shock new storyline for her character Leanna.
In scenes broadcast on ITV tonight, Leanna's 18th birthday celebrations took a horrifying turn when she was murdered by Meena (Paige Sandhu), who threw the teen over a bridge to her death.
"I am glad that the secret is out - I knew back in December that Leanna would meet an untimely death but I wasn't told any other details until just before the scripts were published," said Slinger, who has been on the show for more than three years.
"It has been hard not to let on to anyone. I am sad to be leaving the Emmerdale family on one hand but so excited by what may be in store in the future - I am so excited by the storyline and the opportunity that I have been given to bring some drama to the Dales.
"When Jane Hudson (executive producer) told me about my storyline, I have to say that I was shocked but so excited to be given the opportunity to be challenged and show my acting abilities. Of course, it is a very sad storyline and has been very emotional for me!"
Slinger's final appearance on the soap will come in tomorrow night's episode when her body is discovered.