EastEnders' Danny-Boy Hatchard leaving show as Lee Carter written out


Actor Danny-Boy Hatchard is departing Albert Square as his character Lee Carter is being written out of EastEnders.

Danny-Boy has played Danny Dyer's on-screen son in the soap since 2014.

Danny-Boy Hatchard arriving at the National Television Awards 2016 held at The O2 Arena in London

A spokeswoman said: "We can confirm that Danny-Boy Hatchard will be leaving EastEnders. Danny-Boy has been a great addition to the cast and we wish him all the best for the future."

The news comes days after the soap confirmed actress Rita Simons will leave the show after nine years as Roxy Mitchell.

Rita Simons arriving for the 2014 National Television Awards at the O2 Arena, London.

Last week Samantha Womack, who plays her on-screen sister Ronnie Mitchell, also confirmed she is departing.

Samantha Womack attending the world premiere of Kingsman: The Secret Service at the Odeon Leicester Square, London.

An EastEnders source said: "This was a tough decision for bosses but sometimes to create big storylines characters need to come and go.

"Danny-Boy is an extremely dedicated and versatile actor as well as a hugely popular member of the cast, but with the story they want to play it takes Lee Carter to the end of his time in Walford.

Undated BBC handout photo of Whitney Dean, played by Shona McGarty, talking to Abi Branning (right), played by Lorna Fitzgerald, as cheating boyfriend Lee Carter, played by Danny-Boy Hatchard, looks on during an episode of the BBC1 soap, EastEnders.

"Although, as he is part of the Carter family, no one should rule out a return.

"Danny-Boy has openly said he only ever had a three-year plan so although this has come a little sooner, no one doubts he is bound to land another big role soon."

All three departures have been engineered by executive producer Sean O'Connor, who replaced Dominic Treadwell-Collins this year, The Sun reported.

Danny-Boy confirmed on Twitter that he is looking forward to new opportunities.

Replying to a fan who expressed sadness he is leaving the series, he said: