TV & Movies

BBC Strictly Ellie Leachs brutal Coronation Street exit labelled unfair

She's currently wowing the public with her Strictly Come Dancing performances on the BBC, but Ellie Leach made her name as child star on Coronation Street.

A cousin of then co-star Brooke Vincent, the actress was cast as Faye Windass as a nine-year-old in 2011. Ellie went on to make 682 appearances in Weatherfield, before she was reportedly "left with no choice" but to move on after being told by ITV bosses there was no future for her character.

Now 22, the actress has been given a new lease of life and is one of the favourites to scoop Strictly's coveted Glitterball Trophy next month alongside her professional dance partner, Vito Coppola. It's a far cry from her Corrie exit, which at the time she described as a "crazy situation".

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Ellie told the Mirror in May: "It is scary but I think it's just a crazy situation. It's always going to be scary leaving somewhere that you've been for a long, long time, but I also think with risk comes reward. So as much as it will be sad, you can't live in that fear."

Ellie's co-stars have now reportedly devised a plan for Ellie to get one over on her former employer, by propelling her into becoming a "big star". A source explained: "Everyone has vowed to do all they can to get Ellie to the final of Strictly as a 'f*** you' to bosses. It was made clear to her earlier this year they didn't see a future for her character so she was left with no choice. At the time she said she had quit but it was always seen as an axe.

"It caused major upset behind the scenes because co-stars felt she was treated really badly. So they want her to become a big BBC star and stick two fingers up to the powers that be," they told The Sun.

Ellie previously admitted she would play the role of Faye forever, as she opened up in 2021 about her time on the cobbles. "It is crazy to think it is 10 years," she said. "It has gone so fast but I also feel like I have been there my whole life.

"I definitely didn't imagine I would still be here 10 years later. I am the type who doesnโ€™t like to think too far into the future. I hope I am there forever."

However, after news of her departure from the soap broke, she penned on Instagram: "Just want to say a massive, massive thank you to everyone who has watched Corrie over the past 12 years and supported me.

"And also to my Corrie family, I am going to miss you all so much. And yeah just thank you so much to everyone who has always said nice words and really supported me."

Ellie and Vito finished joint top of the week nine leaderboard on Saturday following their stunning Charleston to Love Machine by Girls Aloud. Judges Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse, Shirley Ballas and Anton du Beke awarded the pair 39 – which tied them with Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin in the show's iconic Blackpool Week.

Strictly Come Dancing continues this weekend on BBC One

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