Carley Stenson tells Soaplife how Steph gets bad news about her cancer… But she’s not revealing how she exits Hollyoaks!

Poor Steph’s life is a roller-coaster right now and it’s no wonder she’s in tears. “She’s gutted when she doesn’t make it through the first round of the talent show,” says Carley. But there’s much worse news to come…

How’s Steph feeling as she prepares for her audition for the TV talent show?

“She’s convinced she’ll soon be a platinum-selling artist headlining the Brits. She ropes Tom into appearing on stage with her. As an orphan he’ll lend weight to her cancer sob story.”

But it doesn’t work… Steph must be disappointed when she doesn’t get through, mustn’t she?

“Deep down she knows she’s not a fantastic singer, but she thought the judges would feel sorry for her and put her through.”

Is Gilly able to comfort her?

“He does more than that… he proposes!”

How does Steph react?

“Initially she thinks he’s done it out of pity and she wants to be loved and desired for herself. She’s very down and thinks, ‘Why would anyone want to be with me?'”

Does Gilly talk her round?

“He manages to persuade her that he truly loves her and she accepts his proposal. They start making plans straight away. Gilly and Steph are right for each other. He’s definitely the man for her.”

Soaplife can’t help thinking it’s a bit soon in their relationship for such a big commitment…

“Yeah, but that’s what life is like in soaps. People do rush into things. If it was real life I’d definitely say she should take things more slowly.”

Especially as her last wedding day ended so tragically!

“That has crossed her mind, but she’s not dwelling on either that or Max. This is about her and Gilly and it’s for his sake as well as her own that she’s not going to let the past affect her future. Since she became ill Steph’s also seizing every opportunity and living for the day.”

Which is the right attitude because as they’re celebrating she gets bad news…

“Steph’s told the hysterectomy didn’t work and she needs chemotherapy immediately. She’s devastated. She had a suspicion this might be the case, but she tried to put a brave face on it.”

Is Gilly supportive?

“Gilly’s really supportive and lovely, plus a 15-year-old lad called Louis who also has cancer helps her too. Louis has been through it before and he teaches her to make light of certain situations and to let her family in. It’s going to be tough though.”

We know you’re leaving. Please don’t say your exit storyline will be Steph dying!

“You know, I can’t tell you how it all ends. I didn’t really have any input as to what will happen. But let’s just say I’m happy with it…”