Explosive exit planned for Janine Butcher as she leaves Albert Square...

Charlie Brooks is leaving EastEnders credit:Bang Showbiz
Charlie Brooks is leaving EastEnders credit:Bang Showbiz

Charlie Brooks is leaving 'EastEnders' 18 months after making a return.

The 41-year-old actress initially starred as Janine Butcher on the BBC One soap opera from 1999 until 2004, then again from 2008 until 2014 and made a comeback to the show in 2021 but will depart Albert Square once more in scenes to be aired in 2023.

She told The Sun on Sunday newspaper: "I was only ever due back to 'EastEnders' for a year, but when [exec producer] Chris Clenshaw presented me with his idea for the story, I couldn’t say no to staying a little longer. But as always with Janine, she probably should not outstay her welcome — for everyone’s sake."

Bosses are said to be brining back Janine's brother Ricky - played by Sid Owen - after a break of more than 10 years as part of the exit storyline, but have otherwise remained tight-lipped on how the "dramatic" scenes will play out.

A source added: "Bosses are staying tight-lipped about her dramatic exit, but massive stories are planned for the rest of the year and for 2023."

Back in June 2021, former ', 'I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here' winner Charlie explained that it was "so good" to be back on the show and was looking forward to finding out what Janine - who famously pushed her husband Barry off a cliff back in 204 - had been up to in her time away.

She said: "I am beyond excited to be slipping back into Janine's shoes and returning to the square. The time feels right and I can't wait to find out what she's been up to for the last seven years!"