WHERE The Heart Is actress Kerrie Taylor claims this year's series of the show is her best yet.
But it will also be her last.
Kerrie, originally from Romsey in Hampshire, has played feisty nurse Beth for the past four years and is now ready for a fresh challenge.
She said: "I'm not leaving because I expect to go on to something bigger or better. I'm leaving because I need to explore my boundaries. I need to keep pushing myself."
Over the years, Kerrie has turned man-hating divorcee Beth Enright turn into happily married Beth Beresford.
Along the way she has had several love affairs, faced the unwanted return of her ex-husband, a miscarriage and a couple of close calls with death.
Finally, in this eighth series, Beth has settled down with husband Tom and his two kids Joe and Molly.
She is also expecting a baby of her own.
But marital bliss and motherhood will not be a peaceful ride.
Kerrie said: "She's has some terrific stuff.
"She slowly realises that when you're having a baby you don't get handed instructions on a plate."
Instructions were something Kerrie was happy to accept when it came to acting pregnant.
She read books, watched birth videos and sought advice from fellow cast members.
Kerrie said: "I didn't want anyone out there thinking: `Well, obviously she's never had a child'. I wanted to do it how I thought Beth would.
"Wearing the bump wasn't half warm! Even though they knew it was a pillow, people wanted to take care of me. I said at one stage that I would take the pregnancy suit home so I could get a seat on the bus!"
As well as babies, Beth will face several brushes with danger, including carbon monoxide poisoning while visiting a patient and a potentially fatal fall.
She survives, only to encounter elderly patient Helen Ashworth (played by guest star Thelma Barlow), who believes Beth is her dead half- sister.
It transpires that the death may not have been an accident and Beth could be in grave danger.
Finally, Beth has a dramatic labour in a broken down bus before giving birth to baby Victor.
Kerrie said: "I've had fantastic storylines. It was a terribly hard decision to decide to go and I know I'm going to miss everybody. I've worked with so many people whose work I've long admired."