'Neighbours' star Melissa Bell confirms return to soap ahead of final episodes

Melissa Bell as Lucy Robinson in Neighbours
Melissa Bell will be returning to her role as Lucy Robinson in 'Neighbours'. (Image credit: Channel 5)

Neighbours star Melissa Bell, who soap fans know and love as Erinsborough's Lucy Robinson, has announced on her social media pages that she is returning to the show. 

Melissa, who first appeared in the soap as Lucy back in 1991, has regularly returned to Neighbours over the years for guest stints, with her most recent comeback happening only last year. 

The actor shared a picture of herself on set with Tim Kano who plays Leo Tanaka and Richard Huggett who plays Glen Donnelly. The trio looked like they are enjoying the sunshine on the new Neighbours vineyard set, with Melissa telling her followers: "I'm Back!! Everyone needs good Neighbours #lucyrobinson."

The news that Melissa will be returning to Neighbours comes directly after the sad announcement from Fremantle Media that the soap will officially stop production this summer after 37 years on our screens.

The initial announcement that Channel 5 was cutting Neighbours from its schedules shocked fans last month, but there was hope that another company would pick up funding for the soap. However, the search proved fruitless and now an official statement has been released announcing that the soap will end for good this summer.

Neighbours cast on Ramsay Street

'Neighbours' will be taken off air this summer.  (Image credit: Channel 5)

Fremantle Media said: "It is with sadness that after nearly 37 years and almost 9000 episodes broadcast, we are confirming that Neighbours will cease production in the summer.

"Following the loss of a key broadcast partner in the UK, and despite a search for alternative funding, we currently have no option but to rest the show.

"Everyone at Neighbours has been overwhelmed by the love and support from the audience since the news came out. 

"The show has brought a sunny slice of Australia into the homes of millions of viewers around the world launching the careers of dozens of household names along the way. 

"But as this chapter of Ramsay Street comes to a close, we promise to do everything we can to give the show the send-off it deserves."

Neighbours airs weekdays at 1.45pm and 5.30pm on Channel 5

Claire Crick
Assistant Managing Editor at What To Watch

Claire is Assistant Managing Editor at What To Watch and has been a journalist for over 15 years, writing about everything from soaps and TV to beauty, entertainment, and even the Royal Family. After starting her career at a soap magazine, she ended up staying for 13 years, and over that time she’s pulled pints in the Rovers Return, sung karaoke in the Emmerdale village hall, taken a stroll around Albert Square, and visited Summer Bay Surf Club in sunny Australia. 

After learning some tricks of the trade at websites Digital Spy, Entertainment Daily, and Woman & Home, Claire landed a role at What’s On TV and whattowatch.com writing about all things TV and film, with a particular love for Aussie soaps, Strictly Come Dancing and Bake Off

She’s interviewed everyone from June Brown — AKA Dot Cotton — to Michelle Keegan, swapped cooking tips with baking legend Mary Berry backstage at the NTAs, and danced the night away with soap stars at countless awards bashes. There’s not a lot she doesn’t know about soaps and TV and can be very handy when a soapy question comes up in a pub quiz! 

As well as all things soap-related, Claire also loves running, spa breaks, days out with her kids, and getting lost in a good book.