Carley Stenson's planned departure

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Hollyoaks actress Carley Stenson

Carley Stenson

'Hollyoaks' actress Carley Stenson admits she planned to leave the show a year ago, and worked closely with producers to find the perfect exit storyline.

Carley Stenson decided to leave 'Hollyoaks' a year ago.

The 27-year-old actress - who has played wannabe singer-and-actress Steph Cunningham in the show since 2000 - admits she first told bosses on the Channel 4 soap about her plans to quit last year, and has been working closely with them on a "long-term" leaving story.

She told new! magazine: "I decided to leave around a year ago. I felt it was time to move on after 10 years of great storylines and many happy times. I had a long talk with the then-producer, who came up with a long-term leaving storyline for me."

The blonde beauty made the decision to exit the soap village so she can focus on her desire to be a musical theatre star.

She explained: "I want to pursue musical theatre, which has always been my primary interest. But I've always said that if 'Hollyoaks' was a musical I'd stay forever. I do love it."

Carley is due to leave the show at the end of the year as part of her alter-ego's struggles with cervical cancer.

Although she's ambitious, Carley has ruled out trying to become a Hollywood star.

She added: "It's not really what I want. It's competitive and it can turn people in a negative way. I like the performance buzz of theatre, and then it's bang, shut the door and it's all gone!"

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