Will a new soap replace Neighbours? Channel 5 boss reveals all

Neighbours spoilers, Neighbours
Could Neighbours be replaced by a new soap? (Image credit: Fremantle)

As Neighbours edges closer to its final ever episode, Channel 5 boss, Ben Frow has revealed whether a new soap will replace it following its axing after 35 years.

The Australian soap will air its final episodes next week, and despite Neighbours fans petitioning for it to be saved, its future is now certain and we won't be seeing any more episodes, much to the devastation of soap enthusiasts.

However, could a new show be replacing the much-loved soap? 

Talking to the Radio Times Magazine, Ben set the record straight and clarified that there are no plans to replace Neighbours.

He said: "No. I think people watch TV in a very different way now. That kind of nightly commitment to a soap is huge.

"You've got Coronation Street, EastEnders, Casualty, Emmerdale, where's the space? My money is better spent on content more versatile than a regular soap." 

Neighbours cast of 2022

Neighbours will come to an end this month. (Image credit: Freemantle Australia)

Ben also discussed the future of Home and Away, which will be the only remaining Australian soap on Channel 5.

And it looks like it’s in safe hands, with the showrunner telling the Radio Times: "I think it will be interesting to see what we do with it as we evolve.

"There might be somewhere else to put it in the 5 spectrum. But it’s a life-of-series deal, so it’s not going anywhere until the makers decide to cancel it."

But there's still plenty for soap fans to look forward to over the coming weeks, as Neighbours has given us a first look at Kylie and Jason on set, where they'll be returning as their iconic characters Scott and Charlene.

Kylie and Jason hug on Ramsay Street as Neighbours icons Scott and Charlene

Jason and Kylie will be reprising their roles as Scott and Charlene for the finale. (Image credit: Channel 5)

On top of this, Neighbours: The Farewell Tour has recently announced the first two legendary characters joining the line-up.

Mainstay characters Jackie Woodburne and Alan Fletcher, who have played the lovable Karl and Susan Kennedy for 27 years, are the first cast to join the highly-anticipated tour and will be travelling to the UK in March 2023.

Lovingly called ‘The King and Queen of Ramsay Street,’ the soap icons have remained on the show since joining in 1994 and have been at the centre of some of the biggest storylines over almost three decades.

The tour promises to treat fans to ‘Never-before-heard stories from Erinsborough’ with an opportunity for an audience Q&A and even a chance to meet the stars in person, while fans will also have a chance to reminisce on their favourite Ramsay Street moments.

The Neighbours finale will air on Friday, July 29 on Channel 5 at 9pm. Until then Neighbours airs weekdays at 1.45 pm and 6 pm on Channel 5. You can also stream on My5.

Grace Morris
Staff Writer

Grace is a digital writer with WhatToWatch.com, where she writes series guides, recaps and features for must-watch shows and delivers all the latest soap news and reactions. She graduated from Anglia Ruskin University in 2020 with a degree in Writing and Film Studies, which only made her love for creative writing, film and TV grow stronger.

You'll usually find her watching the drama unfold in the latest reality series or much-loved UK soaps (usually with chocolate by her side!). She's an expert in EastEnders, Emmerdale, Coronation Street and everything reality-related from Selling Sunset and Married At First Sight UK to 90 Day Fiancé UK. Plus Netflix megahit Virgin River!

Grace also likes to explore new places with her friends and family and, of course, watch and read about the latest films and TV series.