Vera fans have been left devastated following the news that Kenny Doughty has left Vera after starring as DS Aiden Healy for eight years – but why has the actor stepped back from the show? Find out here…
Taking to Instagram to discuss his decision to leave, he wrote: "After 8 years & 35 Vera films I’ve made the difficult decision of handing over DS Healy’s badge. I can confirm I am leaving Vera.
WATCH:Vera actress Brenda Blethyn talks long filming schedule for ITV show
"I want to thank everyone who’s made this amazing time so joyous, ITV, Silverprint, all the brilliant cast and crew BUT of course my buddy & inspiration Brenda Blethyn. The perfect leading star who I owe so much to. I feel lucky to have you as a friend, you make me howl with laughter & have been a rock for me over the years. I can’t thank you enough. Precious times."
Fans were devastated by the announcement
He concluded: "And finally the Vera fans: without you and your support I would never have made so many films. You really are the best fans in the world. Thank you so much for your loyalty & love for the show."
Russell T Davies was among those to wish him well, commenting: "Oh mate. Congratulations. You’ve been wonderful. Here’s to the future," while actor Riley Jones added: "Where to even start. It’s been an absolute pleasure working alongside you for all these years. After 35 films your energy, enthusiasm and sense of fun on set never wavered.
Are you sad Kenny is leaving?
"You’re a true professional and have not only made me a better actor but a better person. Here’s to your next chapter. Can’t wait to see what you do next. Whatever it is I’m sure it’ll be awesome!"
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Although Kenny didn't state exactly why he was stepping down from filming, he thanked several fans who wished him luck in his upcoming roles, hinting that he could be leaving the show to explore new acting roles - particularly as Brenda has previously opened up about how lengthy filming Vera can be - see the moment in the above video.
This is the second co-star to leave the show, as Brenda previously opened up about David Leon leaving the show, admitting that it "broke [her] heart". Chatting on This Morning, she explained: "I never thought I'd get over David going – that broke my heart. But Kenny is a joy. He's my mate. He's great company on set along with the rest of the cast, the crew and the directors."
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