Coronation Street has aired Sophie Webster's exit scenes as actress Brooke Vincent goes on maternity leave.
Impulsively deciding to ditch her studies to join pal Kate Connor on her travels in Cambodia, Soph bid a tearful farewell to mum Sally, dad Kevin, stepdad Tim, little brother Jack and girlfriend Paula Cunliffe on Wednesday 9th October.
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Paula sensed her other half was feeling unfulfilled, prompted by Kate's social media posts about her world tour, and encouraged her to embark on a new adventure, initially saying they'd go together until admitting she was staying put so Sophie could broaden her horizons, aware of the age gap in the relationship meaning they were at different stages of their lives.
As Sophie flies the nest, off-screen Vincent, and footballer boyfriend Kean Bryan, prepare for the birth of her first child. The star is widely expected to return to the show in 2020, having played Kev and Sal's youngest daughter since 2004 when she was just 11 years of age, taking over from Emma Woodward.
Vincent finished filming in late August 2019 and shared a video via Instagram of her last scene, as cast mates including on-screen mum Sally Dynevor presented her with good luck flowers.
The heartfelt post referred to how she had effectively grown up on screen: "15 years ago I came onto the street to play Sophie Webster, and today I left to play my biggest role yet - Mummy!"
Speaking to RadioTimes.com on the red carpet at the British Soap Awards in June 2019, the Street favourite predicted her ever-growing baby bump would be hidden behind buses, tables, and possibly even a tram by the time she left!
Sophie's departure throws up questions with regards to the long-term future of her romance with lawyer Paula, with the pair clearly no longer on the same page - does this mean the age-gap romance is over for good?
Are they strong enough to withstand trying things long-distance for a while? Or will Sophie come back (and let's hope she actually does) with a new love interest?
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