Emmerdale star Sammy Winward is quitting the soap after 13 years.

The actress has played Katie Addyman since 2001, but has decided to leave the ITV series to try out new roles, according to The Sun.

She entered the village when she was 15 as Andy Sugden’s (Kelvin Fletcher) first girlfriend, and after years apart which have seen Katie get married, suffer a miscarriage and fall down a disused mine, the characters are set to marry each other at Christmas.

Apparently, Sammy told Emmerdale bosses shortly after filming her festive wedding scenes that she wanted to leave, but it hasn’t yet been decided whether she will be killed off.

A source said: “Sammy is the Michelle Keegan of Emmerdale so everyone’s gutted she’s leaving. She’s hugely popular and her character has been a big part in the show overtaking EastEnders.

“She wants to spread her wings and try theatre work and other telly. Emmerdale is virtually everything she has ever known.”

Sammy is rumoured to want a role in a period drama and the source continued: “She always has her nose stuck in a book and can’t get enough of documentaries about bygone days.”

A leaving date for Sammy has not been announced yet.