"Emmerdale's" Zak to take a rest
The 56 year old is quick to point out that his departure is not a protest "I have absolutely no axe to grind with Emmerdale or those who make it. This isn't about salary or storylines, it is quite simply that I'm ready for some down time and looking forward to a rest," he said.
Zak Dingle first entered the show in 1994 and has been the centre of many story lines including older fatherhood and testicular cancer.
Steve commented "I love Zak, I love Emmerdale, but I've asked for a spell out to spend some quality time with my family and friends."
An Emmerdale official said "Zak's spell away from the show would begin towards the end of the year, but the rest of the Dingle clan would remain"