Former Emmerdale star Fiona Wade opens up over surprise exit from show

Emmerdale star Fiona Wade has opened up about her surprise exit from the ITV soap and what plans she has now that she's left the show.

Wade played Priya Sharma from 2011 to 2023, and she left when her character was the subject of a kidnapping plot. Now, Wade has opened up about the dramatic exit in a new interview with Hello!.

"She has had some feisty storylines and has been a fantastic character to play. I was very sad filming the final scenes," Wade told them.

emmerdale priya and al

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"It isn’t often as an actor that you’re given that amount of time to really develop a part and make it your own. I will miss that, as well as the beautiful, incredible people I worked with who will always be my friends."

Wade then talked about why she left the role, explaining that she was looking to leave her "comfort zone" and was keen to explore more opportunities outside of Emmerdale.

"I've always been ambitious, and I like to step out of my comfort zone, even if it's terrifying. Fear is okay. It is what you do with it that counts. I believe you should look back and know you have lived your life to the full," Wade said.

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

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"I think the world has opened up. It's an exciting time."

Wade also said that the support of her husband, Simon Cotton, was crucial in her decision to leave the show. Cotton himself previously appeared on the soap, which is how they met.

"He didn't falter once in supporting my decision to leave Emmerdale. If I was ever having a wobble, he was always there, reminding me that it was right for me," Wade said.

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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