Sammy Winward is glad her character Katie Sugden was killed off in 'Emmerdale'.
The 31-year-old actress bowed out of the long-running soap as the blonde farm girl - a role she played for 14 years - at the beginning of 2015 after her alter ego was pushed to death by her husband Andy Sugden's (Kelvin Fletcher) evil brother Robert (Ryan Hawley), but she's glad her departure was done in a permanent way.
Speaking to Inside Soap magazine, she said: "'Emmerdale' will always have a massive place in my heart. I did the show for 14 years and practically grew up on it. So it's always really lovely to meet people and talk through all things Dales ... I didn't get bored of anything like that, but I thought it was time for me to take a risk and see what else was out there. While it was a big decision, it was the right one. I left my exit up to the writers and, initially, I was quite scared to be killed off, but it was for the best. Otherwise I'd forever be wondering whether to go back."
And the blonde beauty really enjoyed filming the explosive scene with Ryan.
She explained: "My exit was so exciting to film. Ryan pushed me and I landed on a big crash mat. My very last scene was actually with Kelvin, where Andy is crying over Andy's body. That was emotional. I had to do a speech on set afterwards, but I lasted all of 10 seconds before I burst into tears."
Since leaving the soap, Sammy - who has 12-year-old daughter Mia with her ex-partner David Dunn - has starred in a number of dramas and has been writing a kids' book.
She said: "The good thing about dramas is that you get little breaks in between, whereas 'Emmerdale' was constant. Of course it has its benefits, but another reason I left was so that I could spend proper time at home. Things like doing the school run and walking the dog sound simple, though they mean the world to me. I've had time to chill, so now I'd like to do theatre, and just continue as a jobbing actor with time off as well."