Hollyoaks has confirmed it airs its last episode before taking a temporary break on Monday 20th July, and will return in the autumn following the recommencement of filming from Monday 13th July.
The coronavirus pandemic caused the UK to go into lockdown in March, forcing Hollyoaks and their continuing drama contemporaries to halt production. One by one the soaps have been getting back in business, starting with Emmerdale in May then followed by Coronation Street and EastEnders in June.
Strict new safety and social distancing measures are in place at the Hollyoaks studios in Liverpool, to ensure production is Covid-safe and within government guidelines.
When the soap returns in September, it will increase from showing twice to four nights a week, with a return to the full five-nights expected by January 2021.
The last completed episode airs on Channel 4 at 6.30pm on Tuesday 21st July - a day after the first showing on E4 - and once we've seen that final cliffhanger a new trailer will be released on air and on the soap's official social channels teasing what's ahead in the autumn, leading up to Hollyoaks' much-hyped 25th anniversary in October.
In a specially-recorded video message, Imran Adams (who plays Mitchell Deveraux) happily announced cast and crew are filming again. "It's the moment you've all been waiting for!" he said. "We are back filming in the iconic Hollyoaks village, and everyone here is so excited. We have so much planned for you guys."
Adams is at the centre of the final episodes, as Mitchell and Scott Drinkwell's upcoming wedding is thrown into chaos as family tensions cause a rift between the happy couple.
Hollyoaks Favourites has been filling the schedule gap on E4 every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday showing classic episodes from the archives. Next week, there's an extra edition on Tuesday 21st July after E4 airs the final new instalment, with all four focusing on Hannah Ashworth's hard-hitting eating disorder storyline from 2007.
Over the summer fans can relive five of the most explosive weeks of Hollyoaks from the last quarter of a century with Hollyoaks@25, which celebrates the soap's past as a way of kicking celebrations for the upcoming milestone later this year.