BBC EastEnders: Why Janine Butcher actor Charlie Brooks is exiting soap AGAIN & when to watch last episode

Janine’s brother Ricky Butcher, played by Sid Owen, is expected to make a return to BBC EastEnders’ Albert Square to bid her farewell.

EastEnders actress Charlie Brooks has confirmed she is leaving her role as Janine Butcher for the third time.

The announcement comes only 18-months after the Hertfordshire-born performer made her dramatic return to Albert Square.

Charlie took the reins of colourful character, Janine, in 1999 when she joined the cast of the BBC soap, making a number of dramatic exits and returns along the way.

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    She first departed EastEnders in 2004 when the character was charged with the murder of Laura Beale.

    Ms Brooks then returned to the role four-years later in 2008, before once again heading for the exit door when Janine left for Paris in 2014.

    Her most recent return to Albert Square was in 2021 as one of the fans most-hated Walford villains tried to win back her daughter Scarlett.

    In her current run in the soap, Janine Butcher has been embroiled in much controversy, as well as a relationship with Mick Carter - who is played by the also departing Danny Dyer.

    But what is the reason behind Charlie Brooks’ EastEnders exit and when is her last episode as the devilish Janine? Here is everything you need to know.

    Why has Charlie Brooks quit EastEnders?

    It has been confirmed that Charlie Brooks was only ever meant to have a short-term stay in Albert Square, as she told The Sun: "I was only ever due back to EastEnders for a year, but when [executive producer] Chris Clenshaw presented me with his idea for the story, I couldn’t say no to staying a little longer.

    "I’ve had an amazing time, as I always do when I go back. But as always with Janine, she probably should not outstay her welcome – for everyone’s sake."

    When is Janine Butcher’s last EastEnders episode?

    If one thing is for certain, it is that Janine’s Albert Square exit will be purely explosive, with reports suggesting that EastEnders showrunners will pull out all the stops to make it one to remember.

    To help Walford bid farewell to both Charlie Brooks and her on-screen character, fans will be happy to see the return of a familiar face.

    Ricky Butcher, who is played by Sid Owen and is Janine’s brother, is expected to return after a 10-year absence.

    Charlie’s last episodes as Janine are expected to air over New Year 2023.