Samantha Womack is set to return to Eastenders, two years after leaving the soap due to stress over the controversial baby-snatch storyline.

Womack, who plays Ronnie Mitchell on the BBC show, will start filming again this summer, as viewers will see the character head back to Walford following her release from prison.

Ronnie was imprisoned after abducting Kat Slater (Jessie Wallace) and Alfie Moon's (Shane Ritchie) baby Tommy, replacing him with her own baby who had died in a cot death.

Womack said of her return: “I am thrilled to be returning to the role of Ronnie for the next six months. Ronnie is coming out of prison and her re-appearance in the Square is going to create havoc. I can’t wait to be a Mitchell once again.”

The baby-snatch storyline drew almost 9,000 complaints from viewers, and Womack suffered from anxiety and exhaustion from acting the scenes.

She said at the time in an interview with Hello magazine: “I did find the storyline very, very difficult to play. It was draining emotionally and physically and by the end I was shattered."

"I worked out I’d been crying or screaming at work every day for six days a week for over two years."

“Can you imagine how exhausting and tiring that is? You’re crying, weeping and telling your brain something awful has happened, so of course that is going to affect you and your body.

“My brain may know I am acting, but my body was doing a different thing. I needed to stop and find peace, a bit like Ronnie.”

The actress, who began working on the soap in 2007 and left in 2011, is returning to Albert Square following her release, throwing her ex-husband Jack Branning (Scott Maslen) into confusion.