EastEnders actress Shona McGarty has been suspended from the soap for four weeks without pay after she reportedly kept turning up late for work.

According to both the Sun and the Sunday Mirror the 20-year-old was sent home from the set on Thursday after clashing with show chief Lorraine Newman.

And the papers also report that the actress is also facing thousands of pounds worth of fines to cover production staff overtime costs from her late arrivals.

The suspension will also result in scripts being rewritten so that her character Whitney Dean is absent from forthcoming storylines.

“Make no mistake, she is in a lot of trouble,” a source told the Mirror, saying that Shona could even be threatened with the sack if her behaviour does not improve.

“EastEnders are putting out two hours of TV 52 weeks of the year,” the insider said. “They can’t afford to be kept waiting for one of the cast to rock up when they feel like it. She has been left in no doubt that she will be booted out ­permanently if she doesn’t sort herself out.”

A BBC source told The Sun, “Shona failed to turn up on time on more than one occasion and was really laid back about why she was late. People are understanding when it’s once or even twice but her lateness was becoming a huge problem.”

The insider added that her lateness had led filming to be held up on several occasions which had angered other cast members and crew.

“Like all soaps, everyone works long, hard days so when things are prolonged because of one person it doesn’t go down well on set,” the source said.

Shona is only the third cast member to receive a suspension in the past five years, others being actor Mohammed George – who plays Gus Smith – who was suspended for two months after receiving a police caution, and Robert Kazinsky – aka Sean Slater – who was given a two-month ban after he was allegedly caught sending obscene texts to a model.

And it is not the first trouble Shona – who is dating co-star Matt Lapinskas – has landed herself in recently. Earlier this year she made the headlines for being thrown out of a branch of Asda after she was alleged to have smeared yoghurt on herself in a suggestive fashion.