Matthew Wolfenden who plays the role of shopkeeper David Metcalfe on Emmerdale has confirmed he will leave the popular ITV soap after 18 years.

The 43-year-old appeared on This Morning to officially announce the sad news as he watched a clip showing some of his best moments since 2006.

As he took his glasses off to wipe away a few tears during the nostalgic segment, Holly Willoughby asked Matthew how he felt about his exit.

Matthew Wolfenden confirms Emmerdale exit in emotional This Morning interview

He replied: “I’m so nervous about leaving, but almost two decades, it feels like the right time.

“The door’s left open, they’re not killing me off, I’ve been promised. I’m allowed to tell you that.

“Who knows, I might be back. Yeah, but we will see."

The Yorkshire-based series means a lot to the actor as it’s where he met his wife and fellow Emmerdale favourite Charley Webb, who played the character of Debbie Dingle.

Charley left one of the Dale’s most famous families after 19 years in 2021.

The pair share three sons together.

Jack Whitehall is 'so excited to have started a family of my own'

Matthew added: “Not only has it given me 18 years, it’s given me a family, so to leave it, it’s been a big big big part of my life and just the most amazing 18 years.”

Speaking about his final storyline, he revealed: "There is a resolution of sorts... I can't give too much away. Victoria is the reason why he leaves the village... put it that way!

"He leaves because of Victoria in a way, I can't give too much away!"

The dad-of-three also gave an exciting update on his next career move, telling ITV1 viewers he has been having singing lessons as he will be appearing as Buddy in Elf The Musical at the Dominion Theatre over the Christmas period later this year.

Previously a TV source told The Sun: “Matthew has had an amazing time on the soap, but feels ready for a change.

“He hasn’t been getting any gritty storylines recently so wants to see what else is out there.”

The source continued to say: "He’s a fan favourite so will get a lot of support in whatever he decides to do next.

"He’s very excited about the opportunities available.”