The soap actress, who has played feisty personal trainer Jade Mitchell for two years, bid an emotional farewell to Ramsay Street as she bowed out of the role in scenes that required ‘a tsunami of tears.
Gemma revealed: “I didn’t need to dig too deep, the tears came very easily.”
Jade recently had her heart broken after splitting from her true love Kyle Canning (Chris Milligan) after he cheated on her with her friend Kate Ramsay (Ashleigh Brewer).
Gemma, who decided to quit Neighbours earlier this year, said: “I’ve loved this job so much, but I felt that two years was long enough to play one character. I became an actor to play lots of different roles and while Jade has been an amazing, I need to challenge myself and do other things.”
She is moving back to Sydney to work on a project with her theatre company Cry Havoc before heading overseas.
Gemma was swamped by gifts and flowers from fellow co-stars and crew, including Ramsay Street legend Ian Smith, aka Harold Bishop. Ian worked with Gemma last year when he returned to Neighbours for a guest appearance.
He said: “Gemma is not only an exceptional talent, she is a lovely person and a delight to work with.”
Jade’s exit will screen in the UK on Channel 5 in December.