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EastEnders writes out four more characters in major cast overhaul

It's time to say goodbye...

Ricky Champ as Stuart Highway in EastEnders
BBC
Published: Friday, 10th June 2022 at 7:26 pm
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It's time to say goodbye.

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EastEnders has reportedly axed four more characters as a major cast shake-up continues.

Following reports that Lola Pearce (Danielle Harold) will be killed off later this year, she will now be joined by four other departing characters, according to a report from Metro.

Peter Beale, played by Dayle Hudson, is set to depart the show this summer after striking up a spark with the girlfriend of his younger brother Bobby Beale (Clay Milner Russell), Dana Monroe (Barbara Smith), who will also be departing the show.

Additionally, it is understood that Jada Lennox (Kelsey Calladine-Smith) - the mother of Alyssa, the infant granddaughter of Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean) - will also be leaving the soap.

Finally, former villain Stuart Highway (Ricky Champ) is also reported to be being written out of the soap in the coming months.

The departures come as new executive producer Chris Clenshaw takes over the reins of the BBC One soap.

A source told Metro.co.uk: "He’s been working hard behind the scenes since January and is really planning to shake things up which means saying goodbye to some characters.’

They added: "It’s nothing personal to any of the cast going, it’s simply a creative decision – for big storylines to happen you have to say goodbye people, that’s the nature of soap.

"Chris has some really big stories planned and viewers will see his stuff starting to air over the summer."

RadioTimes.com has reached out to the BBC for comment on this story.

13-06-2022,6502,Peter Beale (DAYLE HUDSON);Dana Monroe
Peter Beale (Dayle Hudson) and Dana Monroe (Barbara Smith) are leaving the soap BBC, Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron

As the seventh actor to play the character, Hudson made his debut as Peter in 2020 and his storylines have focused on taking over Beale family business affairs, struggling with the presence of his brother Bobby and various romances on Albert Square.

Smith first appeared as Bobby's love interest Dana in April 2021 in a guest capacity before becoming a regular character and even having her family expanded with the addition of her father Harvey Monroe (Ross Boatman) and her recently departed villainous brother, Aaron Monroe (Charlie Wernham).

Dana's storylines have focused on her romance with Bobby, differences with her right-wing extremist brother Aaron and her upcoming dalliance with Peter.

Meanwhile, Calladine-Smith was introduced on-screen as Jada in November 2021 when she abandoned her baby Alyssa at the home of Sharon Watts - with it later being revealed that Alyssa was the daughter of Sharon's dead son, Dennis "Denny" Rickman (Bleu Landau).

EMBARGO 8 FEB 2022 WK 7 EASTENDERS JADA
Jada Lennox (Kelsey Calladine-Smith) is also set to leave the soap

Jada's time on the soap has focused on her struggles with motherhood and her recent crush on Sharon's brother, Zack Hudson (James Farrar).

Finally, Ricky Champ first arrived on-screen as Stuart Highway in May 2018, introduced as the older brother of Callum "Halfway" Highway (Tony Clay) and the childhood best friend of Mick Carter (Danny Dyer).

Stuart initially served a villainous role as he sought to destroy Mick's life and framed him for crimes he did not commit.

He eventually became a reformed character and married the troubled Rainie Cross (Tanya Franks), with recent storylines focusing on their quest to have a child via surrogacy, Stuart battling breast cancer, and also his struggling with post-natal depression.

EastEnders: Stuart worries Rainie
How will Rainie Highway (Tanya Franks) cope without Stuart (Ricky Champ)

It is unknown how any of the four characters will be written out of the soap.

Earlier this month, EastEnders confirmed that the Baker family would be expanded with Mitch Baker (Roger Griffiths) welcoming his estranged brother Avery (Omar Lye-Fook, MBE) and two nephews, Felix (Matthew Morrison) and Finlay (Ashley Byam), to Albert Square.

Meanwhile, Danny Dyer will depart his now-iconic role as Mick Carter towards the end of the year after quitting the role after nine years as the pub landlord.

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