Emmerdale actor Matt Healy – aka Matthew King – is to quit the soap, ITV has confirmed.

Having played the ruthless King brother for almost five years, Matt will be leaving Emmerdale at the end of the year in what’s set to be an ‘explosive storyline’, according to show bosses.

Matt said: “After nearly five years of wearing Matthew’s suits every morning and having to shave every day, I feel ready to pull on some bermuda shorts and grow a goatee!

“On a serious note, I’ve had a brilliant time at Emmerdale and I’m excited about what lies ahead.”

Anita Turner, series producer of Emmerdale, added: “Matt has been an asset to the show but we have both agreed that Matthew King will leave Emmerdale in an explosive storyline at the end of the year.

“We wish Matt all the best for the future.”

Emmerdale bosses have denied that Matt’s departure could also mean the end for his on-screen brothers Jimmy and Carl, played by Nick Miles and Tom Lister, but said that the events leading up to his exit would be well worth watching.