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Icon of EastEnders After 15 years, Shona McGarty ‘quits’ her position as Whitney Dean.

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According to rumours, Shona McGarty will no longer appear at Albert Square.

After 15 years as Whitney Dean on EastEnders, actor Shona McGarty has decided to leave the programme.

The 31-year-old has portrayed Whitney on the BBC serial since she was 16 years old, but she has now decided to end her ‘tough’ starring role.

Exclusively provided to Express.co.uk by an EastEnders spokesperson, Shona will be leaving the soap along actress Lorraine Stanley, who plays Karen Taylor.

“Shona is leaving, and Karen’s character has been written out,” they stated.

“I have decided to spread my wings and will be leaving EastEnders,” Shona said in a statement to The Sun on Sunday. My time on the show has been wonderful.

In addition, she said, “I have been trusted with some incredible storylines and have made amazing friendships—and family—which will endure.”

While producers decide on her exit plot, the actress’s farewell scenes are anticipated to air in the first few months of next year, when it is thought that her contract would expire.

According to a source, the actress’ decision wasn’t an easy one, and she is “gutted” to be departing after making the difficult decision to do so.

Shona reportedly feels that it is time to try something new at this point, though.

As they said, “Shona is really looking forward to new projects and expanding her career horizon.”

Whitney won’t be the only famous person saying farewell to Walford; after seven years on the drama, Lorraine Stanley, who plays Karen Taylor, is also planning to leave.

Since joining the soap opera in 2008 as the teenage stepdaughter of Bianca Jackson (Patsy Palmer), Shona has taken on some hard storylines.

The discovery that Tony King (Chris Coghill) had been sexually assaulting Whitney and groomed her since she was 12 was one of her first heartbreaking plots.

Whitney’s most heartbreaking plot involved the diagnosis of Edwards syndrome in her unborn child, which led to the termination of the pregnancy in order to induce early labour, and the birth of Whitney’s daughter, Peach.

It is rumoured that Shona McGarty will leave EastEnders in 2019.

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