Simone Ashley has confirmed that she will no longer appear on Netflix's Sex Education, as she focuses her attention instead on smash-hit period drama Bridgerton.

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She joined the cast of the Regency-era romance from Shonda Rhimes in its second season as Kate Sharma, a potential bride to Jonathan Bailey's Anthony Bridgerton.

Her performance earned praise from critics and the new episodes were devoured by fans, with Netflix reporting a staggering 251 million hours watched in its first seven days on the service.

It's unsurprising then that Ashley is committed to returning for season 3, even though it comes at the cost of having to leave behind her earlier Netflix gig.

When quizzed on her Sex Education future, she told ITV's This Morning: "I get asked that all the time. No, I'm a Bridgerton girl now."

Ashley had previously played Olivia on Sex Education, a popular student at Moordale High who initially treats Otis with disdain, but later relies on him for intimacy advice after experiencing issues with her boyfriend.

Bridgerton. (L to R) Adjoa Andoh as Lady Danbury, Simone Ashley as Kate Sharma in episode 201 of Bridgerton.
Adjoa Andoh as Lady Danbury and Simone Ashley as Kate Sharma (Liam Daniel/Netflix) Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2022

It's not yet known how the Sex Education writers will explain Olivia's absence – or if they will at all – but we do have some insight into what the future has in store for Bridgerton's Kate in season 3.

"She's the head of the household now, she's the Viscountess and married to Anthony and it's a year later at this point, so I'm very excited," added Ashley.

Bridgerton seasons 1-2 and Sex Education seasons 1-3 are available to stream on Netflix. Check out more of our Drama coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.

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