Emma Atkins' character, Charity Dingle, is set to make a dramatic return to Emmerdale on Thursday night, after a brief stint in prison. And in pure soap style, she will shock the villagers by announcing herself as the new joint owner of the Woolpack.
Charity will be seen arriving in a stolen Ferrari, and within a matter of hours she will be causing chaos for ex Cain Dingle (played by Jeff Hordley) and his wife Moira (played by Natalie J. Robb).
Emma Atkins will return to Emmerdale this week
"It is just brilliant to see her behind the bar. Something very different. She will be under the watchful eye of Chas (Lucy Pargeter), but both characters can give as good as they get so it will be a colourful dynamic," Emma said of her return.
"The bar is a bit like a stage for Charity where she can show off and deliver her explosive one liners to the locals. Her behaviour will no doubt fluctuate from good to bad to ugly, with a decent dose of naughtiness thrown in."
When Emma temporarely left the soap, viewers were surprised by the outcome of her long-running storyline; in a shock twist her character Charity was sentenced to two years in jail for insurance fraud. This allowed Emma to take time off for maternity leave.
Her character Charity has just left prison and is back to cause trouble
A source said at the time: "She's been hiding her baby news from everyone outside of the show. Charity has escaped punishment for insurance fraud several times before but soap bosses decided it would be a good idea to write in a two-year jail sentence so that Emma could go on maternity leave."
The insider told the Mirror: "No one has guessed she's pregnant so didn't see Charity's prison sentence coming. Everyone assumed she would get away with it like she has so many times in the past."
Charity Dingle was senteced to two years of prison for fraud
Emma confirmed she was eight months pregnant in a special video message. "I do have a mixture of emotions going around because obviously I'm leaving for a while," she told fans. "I am leaving. Probably for about a year because I'm leaving to have a baby which is really exciting. I will miss Emmerdale so much but it is a new little journey in my life that I'm taking on now… I can't wait to come back – hopefully within a year."
In March she welcomed a "lovely, healthy baby boy". The actress and her businessman partner Tom welcomed their first child together "just before" her 40th birthday. It was "the best present", she told The Sun.