EastEnders: has Lola Pearce actress Danielle Harold been axed from show - and what will happen to character?

Danielle Harold first joined the EastEnders cast in 2011 when she was 18

Rumours have begun to circulate that Danielle Harold, who plays Lola Pearce on EastEnders, will be leaving the soap amid speculation that she has been axed from the show.

A report from the Sun claims that the actress was told that her character would be getting killed off, leaving her with no options to return to the Square again in the future.

While Harold has been tipped to be leaving the soap there has been no official confirmation of her exit either from the actress or from EastEnders itself.

This is what you need to know.

Is Danielle Harold leaving EastEnders?

According to a report from the Sun, Harold has allegedly been told by script bosses that her character, Lola, will be killed off, leaving her no option to return to the Square in the future.

The Sun says that the move is part of boss Chris Clenshaw’s plan to “shake-up the show” with a “number of explosive twists over the summer”.

An EastEnders insider told the outlet: “[Danielle] was in pieces. The cull came out of the blue.

“She was not expecting the chop because her character has been a firm favourite with viewers. She’ll be written out with no option to return.”

Danielle Harold attends the National Television Awards 2020 at The O2 Arena on January 28, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

They added: “Danielle was teary but told a number of the cast were being shown the door.

“No-one else has been given their marching orders yet however.

“The rest of the cast are rallying around her.”

The Sun also added that a source said: “She handled the news like a true pro and is eager to throw herself into the storyline.”

How long has Danielle Harold been on EastEnders?

Harold first joined the EastEnders cast in June 2011 when she was introduced to audiences as Lola Pearce, the granddaughter of Billy Mitchell and Julie Perkins. Her first major storyline was that of her pregnancy at the age of 15.

She was 18 years old when she was first cast on the soap, saying at the time: “I am so excited to be joining EastEnders.

“I have watched the show all my life and I never thought that one day I could be in Albert Square.

Danielle Harold attends ‘The Krays: Dead Man Walking’ UK premiere at The Genesis Cinema on September 9, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)

“It feels strange to be walking round Walford with people I have grown up watching, I still have to pinch myself.”

Her character gave birth in July 2012 in a special live broadcast and Harold became the second actress to act out a live birth on a soap, after Coronation Street’s Jennie McAlpine did so in 2010.

Harold left EastEnders in 2015 however the door was left open for Lola to return and she reprised the role on 1 April 2019, along with her on-screen daughter, Lexi Pearce.

Who is Danielle Harold?

Harold is an English actress best known for her role as Lola Pearce on EastEnders, for which she has won two awards - the TVTimes Best Newcomer award and the All About Soap Best Baby Drama award.

Aside from EastEnders, Harold has appeared in a handful of other on screen roles, including Casualty, Fanged Up, Two Graves, Monster, Dead Ringer, The Tombs and Next Door.

Prior to beginning her acting career, Harold featured on Jamie’s Dream School, a seven part TV series which saw Jamie Oliver enrol a group of teenagers with less than five GCSEs into his “dream school” where celebrities teach lessons in specialist subjects.

Danielle Harold attends the British Soap Awards at The Lowry Theatre on June 01, 2019 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images)

Harold had been viewed as one of the brightest students on the show, having only achieved one GCSE after losing out on a year of school due to illness.

She was given a tour of Cambridge University by English historian and presenter David Starkey, who felt she could be a good fit for the university, however Harold decided to pursue acting instead and went ahead with auditioning for roles - eventually landing Lola Pearce with EastEnders.

Talking to the Daily Star in 2011, Harold said: “I’ve always wanted to be an actress. I didn’t do very well at school because I became ill in my final year. I worked for a local catering company but I couldn’t stop thinking about being an actress.

“Every night I would search the internet for acting schools.

“I’ve been very lucky to have been given such a great character and I still can’t quite believe everything that’s happened to me. It’s been a whirlwind.”