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'EastEnders' exec: 'We'd love Ronnie back'

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Ronnie Mitchell in EastEnders

© BBC

EastEnders' executive producer Bryan Kirkwood has reiterated that the soap's team are eager to see Samantha Womack return to Walford at some point in the future.

Womack recently filmed her final scenes as Ronnie Branning after four years playing the troubled character. Her decision to take a break from the show emerged in January amid the controversy which surrounded Ronnie's baby swap storyline.

Answering viewer questions on This Morning today, Kirkwood was asked whether the door is still being left open for Ronnie to make a return.

He replied: "Absolutely, yeah. Sam filmed her final scenes with us a few weeks ago and we'll see her exit storyline unfold over the coming weeks. She's much-loved and much-missed, so we'd love to have Sam back at any time in the future."

Reflecting on the baby swap row, he said: "I think hindsight's a brilliant thing and perhaps we misjudged the audience's appetite to see Ronnie cry yet again. She'd been crying for three years up until that point, and here was another storyline that had her on her knees.

"But at the same time, I'm really proud of the storyline. I think the episodes in April where Kat got her baby back were EastEnders at its best. I think they were brilliant episodes."

Kirkwood also insisted that Womack's decision to bow out from EastEnders was not influenced by the tragic storyline.

"I took over in March of last year and I knew that it was going to be Sam's last year on the show at that point," he said. "So we embarked on the storyline knowing that it would lead to Ronnie and Sam's exit."

Womack's latest project sees her take on the role of Nellie Forbrush in a touring production of South Pacific.

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