shona mcgarty at awards show

EastEnders actress Shona McGarty confirms split from fiance

The actress rose to fame in EastEnders

Aisha Nozari

Shona McGarty, best known for playing Whitney Dean in EastEnders, has confirmed her split from fiancé Ryan Harris, who she had been dating for five years before announcing their engagement in 2018, saying that the couple "grew apart".

Shona and Ryan are believed to have gone their separate ways after 18 months of engagement, and speaking to the Daily Star Shona addressed the breakup. The actress said: "We just grew apart. Nothing bad happened, it was all very amicable. We were together for a long time, but it just wasn't meant to be."

shonaandexfianceryan-

Shona and Ryan

However, the 28-year-old also added that she isn't looking to date anyone else just yet, explaining: "I think it's really important to have some time by yourself. As I've got older it's refreshing because I no longer care what people think of me any more. I'm definitely older and wiser."

MORE: EastEnders star Barbara Windsor’s family give heartbreaking update on her Alzheimer’s battle

Shona was in high spirits on NYE

MORE: Inside the homes of EastEnders stars Lacey Turner, Tamzin Outhwaite and more

She concluded that right now, her main priorities are her career and having fun: "I feel great... and I'm in a good place. I'm certainly looking forward and not back. I just want to live my life, focus on work and have some fun."

To kick off the New Year, Shona shared a sweet message on Twitter, proving that she's headed into 2020 in high spirits. The soap star tweeted: "HAPPY NEW YEAR! Love and blessings! May this year bring you all so much happiness."

Shona might be having a fabulous January, but unfortunately the same can't be said for her EastEnders counterpart, Whitney. Shona told readers that her storyline is about to get even darker ahead of the soap's 35th anniversary. Luckily, the actress enjoys her more sinister storyline, adding: "Of course it's nice to have happy storylines, laughing and joking, but I like being busy and getting my teeth stuck into the darker stuff."

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.