Fans Of Home And Away may need to brace themselves – much-loved character Irene is preparing to leave [Summer Bay]. Or rather, the actress who plays her, Lynne McGranger, is getting out of town – and the country.
“I get bored very easily,” Lynne, 64, tells TV WEEK. “I’m one of those people who needs a bit of a change-up and something different.”
When TV WEEK earlier this year reported Irene was leaving the Bay, upset fans assumed Lynne, who has been with H&A for more than two decades, was quitting the show.
Recently, those same rumours have resurfaced, much to Lynne’s disbelief.
“I’m like, ‘That was six months ago, people,’” she says. “Let it be.”
However, Lynne is able to look on the bright side – fans really do care about Irene.
“At least people aren’t saying, ‘At last she’s leaving,’” she says. “They’re going, ‘No, please don’t.’ That’s nice.”
In truth, Lynne is heading to the UK to do pantomime. It’s an annual pilgrimage for the veteran actress.
“I’m off to York to play the wicked fairy in Beauty And The Beast,” she enthuses. “I’m really looking forward to it.”
After filming emotional scenes involving her H&A character’s son Mick (Kristian Schmid), Lynne is excited about her panto role.
“It’s physically demanding,” she says. “We do 12 shows a week. And we rehearse it in about nine days.
“Ray Meagher [her H&A co-star, who plays Alf] always tells me I’m mad for still doing it. But I love it.”
When she’s back from the UK, Lynne will return to the Bay.
“Irene can be a polarising character,” she says. “But it’s when people don’t care about you that you start packing your bags.”