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Coronation Street – why has Fiz Dobbs left Weatherfield?

Coronation Street spoilers follow.

Coronation Street aired exit scenes for Fiz Dobbs on Friday night (May 12) as the long-standing character bowed out for a new job opportunity.

With Underworld outsourcing some of its workload, Fiz headed off for a new supervisor role in Norwich after being recommended for the position by Stephen Reid.

Although this would mean being away from her family for the foreseeable future, Fiz was won over by the chances for new responsibilities and the promise of a much higher salary.

For those who haven't already heard the news, Fiz's exit storyline is a temporary one as Jennie McAlpine – who plays her – is now on maternity leave.

tyrone dobbs, fiz stape, coronation street
ITV

Jennie announced in January that she and her husband Chris Farr are expecting their third child together. The couple already have 9-year-old son Albert and 4-year-old daughter Hilda.

Coronation Street bosses deliberately gave Fiz a low-key exit storyline, keen not to wreck her relationship with long-term partner Tyrone Dobbs so soon after their Christmas Day wedding ceremony.

Appearing on ITV's Loose Women in February, show producer Iain MacLeod commented: "This is one of the weird things about working on a soap.

"When an actor says they're pregnant, obviously the first reaction is, 'Congratulations, that's amazing', but the second one is, 'Right, how are we going to account for their absence?'

hope stape, fiz dobbs, evelyn, coronation street
ITV

"What we didn't want to do is split them [Fiz and Tyrone] up because they've been on again and off again and they've just got married."

After Fiz had made her move and settled into her new home, she made a video call to her family for a catch-up.

We'll be seeing more of these scenes in the coming months, as Corrie planned ahead by filming a series of "Fiz calls" before Jennie left.

hope stape, fiz dobbs, evelyn plummer, coronation street
ITV

MacLeod said: "Fiz will be leaving to cover Jennie's maternity leave, but it will be not acrimonious. They'll part as friends and they'll try to do the long-distance thing.

"Actually, we've pre-recorded some little bits with Jennie that we're going to play in as video calls, so while she's away we can still see her talking to Tyrone. We're trying to use all the tricks we can to cover it."

While Jennie hasn't specified how long she'll be taking for maternity leave, Fiz's new job has been described on screen as a six-month fixed-term contract.

During Fiz's time away, there'll be plenty to keep her family busy. The show has confirmed a new direction for her daughter Hope after years of villainous storylines.

Former Brookside star Claire Sweeney has also been cast as Tyrone's long-lost mum Cassie. Cassie's arrival seems likely to cause a huge rift in the Dobbs household, as Evelyn Plummer had previously told Tyrone that his biological mother was dead.

Coronation Street airs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV1 and streams on ITVX.

Read more Coronation Street spoilers on our dedicated homepage

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