Former Emmerdale star Fiona Wade reflects on big decision to leave the show

Former Emmerdale star Fiona Wade has reflected on her decision to leave the ITV soap after 12 years.

The actress made her debut as Priya Sharma in 2011, and left the role early last year when her character was involved in a kidnapping plot.

Now touring the UK in theatre play 2:22 A Ghost Story, Wade told OK! that she's fully embracing life away from the Dales.

emmerdale priya and al
ITV

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"I knew that my first job out of Emmerdale had to be the right one, and then this came up. It’s honestly been the best decision ever," she shared.

"When you leave a soap, I think some people think you made the decision yesterday, but these decisions are taken over years. It was a scary decision, but it was the right one."

The actress also explained that, while "theatre can feel more scary" than TV since you can't do another take if you mess up, she was "very comfortable" in Emmerdale and wanted to do something that "challenged" her.

london, england november 23 fiona wade attends itv palooza at the royal festival hall on november 23, 2021 in london, england photo by karwai tangwireimage
Karwai Tang - Getty Images

Related: Emmerdale lines up new target for villainous Amit Sharma

The door has been left open for Priya's return, but it doesn't sound like Wade will be making a comeback any time soon.

"It was incredibly kind that they left the door open for Priya but I trust myself and I know it was the right decision," she said.

"I don’t want to live looking back, that’s not my personality, I want to live my life knowing I fully jumped with confidence. And I think I’ve done that."

Wade shared something similar while opening up about her exit last year, saying: "When you've been somewhere for that long and that's your every day, it's hard and feels sad. But as every actor knows, you need to challenge yourself and that's very important too."

Emmerdale airs on weeknights at 7.30pm on ITV1, and streams on ITVX.

Read more Emmerdale spoilers on our dedicated homepage

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