Emmerdale veteran Paula Tilbrook is bowing out of the soap 21 years after signing up to play village gossip Betty Eagleton for three episodes.
The actress, whose first scene saw her order a sweet sherry in the Woolpack, has filmed her final scene and will be seen leaving next month.
Tilbrook, who has also appeared in Coronation Street, was introduced to the long-running rural soap as an old flame of Seth Armstrong.
She said: " I have been at Emmerdale for 21 years and I've loved every moment. Today is both the saddest and the happiest day of my life. Happy because I've got everyone here with me but the sad part is I'm leaving. But there is a great atmosphere and it is nice to go out on a high."
Series producer Kate Oates said: "It's impossible to overstate how much everyone at Emmerdale will miss Paula. In Betty, she's created a British television icon: someone who has lit up our screens and touched our hearts.
"Off screen, she is an integral part of the Emmerdale family: an inspiration to those she works with, as well as a fabulous raconteur and hilarious storyteller. We are sad to lose her from the programme, but wish her the happy retirement she so deserves."