Emmerdale's series producer Gavin Blyth has died at the age of 41, ITV has confirmed.
The show chief - who took office at the Yorkshire-based soap in January 2009 - passed away last night following a short period of ill health.
An Emmerdale spokesperson said today: "It is with great sadness that we confirm our series producer Gavin Blyth passed away last night after a short illness.
"Our thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues at this terrible time. He will be greatly missed by us all. Gavin leaves his wife Suzy and children Tom, 15, Anya, 11 and Carter, aged 1."
Blyth first joined the world of soap in 2002, when he landed the job of senior publicist at Emmerdale. He later secured the position of script editor at the programme.
In 2005, Blyth became a story associate at Coronation Street before moving onto the role of assistant producer.
After returning to Emmerdale in the position of series producer last year, he began steering a major revamp of the rural soap. His decisions included introducing the Sharma and Barton families, bringing back the characters of Cain and Charity and signing up a number of new cast members, including Kim Thomson, James Sutton, Suzanne Shaw and Pauline Quirke.
Sally Spode's evil revenge on village vicar Ashley Thomas, the tale of Mark Wylde's murder and Aaron Livesy's sexuality struggle were among the successful storylines which appeared on screens during his time with the soap.
Paying tribute to Blyth, Emmerdale's executive producer Steve November said: "Gavin has made an immense contribution to Emmerdale since taking over as series producer in January 2009 and during many hugely successful years at ITV.
"As a friend and colleague, he will be missed an incredible amount by us all. It is a very sad day for everyone at Emmerdale. Our thoughts are with Gavin's family and those closest to him at this difficult time."
Apparently it was lung cancer, RIP he really turned the show around.