Denise Van Outen says she is 'so sad' Neighbours has been axed – following her time as Prue Wallace

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Denise Van Outen reveals she is ‘so sad’ Neighbours will no longer air on Channel 5 – following her time on the show as Prue Wallace


She played Prue Wallace, the enigmatic mother of Harlow Robinson, between 2019 and 2020.

And Denise Van Outen has said she is ‘so sad’ that Neighbours will no longer air on the UK’s Channel 5 – after 37 years as a staple of Australian and UK television.   

Speaking on Steph’s Packed Lunch on Monday, the actress, 45, said: ‘I’m so sad it’s been taken off air in the UK, it is such an institution. 

Gone: Denise Van Outen has said she is'so sad' that Neighbours will no longer air on the UK's Channel 5 after 37 years as a staple of Australian and UK television

Gone: Denise Van Outen has said she is ‘so sad’ that Neighbours will no longer air on the UK’s Channel 5 after 37 years as a staple of Australian and UK television

‘It actually has a bigger audience here than it does in Australia. I don’t know what they’re going to do, you get the tour bus coming round with all the Brits on it. It’s a real, real shame.’

Denise’s character Prue was mum to Harlow, played by Gemma Donovan, daughter of Neighbours icon Jason Donovan.

Talking to Steph McGovern on Channel 4, Denise described being in Neighbours as ‘surreal’ as the show looks set to be axed.

Ramsay Street: Denise’s character Prue was mum to Harlow, played by Gemma Donovan (right), daughter of Neighbours icon Jason Donovan

Ramsay Street: Denise’s character Prue was mum to Harlow, played by Gemma Donovan (right), daughter of Neighbours icon Jason Donovan

End of an era? Speaking on Steph’s Packed Lunch on Monday, the actress, 45, said:'I’m so sad it’s been taken off air in the UK, it is such an institution'

End of an era? Speaking on Steph’s Packed Lunch on Monday, the actress, 45, said: ‘I’m so sad it’s been taken off air in the UK, it is such an institution’

She said: ‘It was really surreal… It’s the same studio where they started it and I would sit there and Jason would FaceTime his daughter, Gemma. 

‘I’m thinking how surreal is this, Scott Robinson’s FaceTiming his daughter and I’m here, little old me from Essex.’ 

In a statement released on Sunday, Channel 5 confirmed their decision not to renew their contract to air the Australian soap with producers Fremantle Australia. 

Goodbye: Neighbours has been dropped by its UK broadcaster, Channel 5. In a statement, the network confirmed their decision not to renew their contract to air the Aussie soap with producers Fremantle Australia. Pictured: the show's 2021 cast

Goodbye: Neighbours has been dropped by its UK broadcaster, Channel 5. In a statement, the network confirmed their decision not to renew their contract to air the Aussie soap with producers Fremantle Australia. Pictured: the show’s 2021 cast

Fremantle later emailed staff saying filming would end on June 10, and absent any new broadcaster emerging to provide the funds to resume production, the show looked to be at an end. 

Channel 5’s statement read: ‘It’s been a much-loved part of our schedule for more than a decade, and we’d like to thank the cast, Fremantle and all of the production team for their fantastic work on this iconic series. 

‘We’d also of course like to thank the fans for their loyal support of Neighbours across the years. 

‘We recognise that there will be disappointment about this decision, however our current focus is on increasing our investment in original UK drama, which has strong appeal for our viewers.’ 

Steph’s Packed Lunch airs weekdays at 12.30pm on Channel 4 and All 4

Telling the tale: Talking to Steph McGovern on Channel 4, Denise described being in Neighbours as'surreal'

Telling the tale: Talking to Steph McGovern on Channel 4, Denise described being in Neighbours as ‘surreal’

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