Fans of EastEnders were startled when Shona McGarty left the show after 15 years, and she now explains why.

After 15 years, Shona explained why she was quitting the character of Whitney (Image: BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron).

After 15 years of portraying Whitney Dean in EastEnders, Shona McGarty will shortly leave the soap opera.

Whitney has seen her fair share of sadness over the years as a result of Tony’s abuse, the murder of her stalker, and a miscarriage.

She just became pregnant once more, only to discover that her child had the fatal ailment Edwards’ Syndrome. Then, amid heartbreaking scenes, she made the agonising choice to end her pregnancy before giving birth.

Shona has explained her decision to leave the programme in detail and acknowledged that it was ‘the right decision’ before her departure.

Shona McGarty left EastEnders for what reason?
It’s the end of an era in real life, but the actress is prepared for it.

Since I’ve made so many friends, it wasn’t an easy choice, Shona admitted to Inside Soap. I’ve seen characters come and go, but Whitney has remained one of the more enduring ones.

“I’ve done so many storylines, some of which have been sensitive, and I’ve had so much fun doing them. It’s been an honour to be trusted with such serious material year after year.”

I’ll be sorry to say goodbye to my family and friends, but I made the proper choice since I want to pursue other interests. I’ve had a very decent run after 15 years!”

There will be more suffering for Whitney and Zack. (Image: Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron for the BBC)

Given that the actress is apparently “in talks” for the upcoming season of Dancing On Ice, it appears that Shona may already have her next undertaking planned.

There is yet more to store for her character before she departs the BBC serial opera, especially in regards to her partner Zack Hudson (James Farrar).

Whitney is expected to break Zack’s heart by admitting that she doesn’t want to try for any additional children during this week’s argument between the couple.

According to Shona, who spoke to Inside Soap, “Whitney doesn’t want to put her body through another pregnancy because she can’t risk the same thing happening again.”

Will Whitney and Zack’s relationship endure as they work to overcome this obstacle? Will Whitney decide to leave the Square permanently as a result of this, or will something else trigger it?

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