Barbara Windsor to leave 'EastEnders'

EastEnders icon Barbara Windsor is to leave the BBC soap next year, it has been announced.

The 72-year-old, who play Walford's iconic landlady Peggy Mitchell since 1994, is to leave the show after 15 years in the role.

Details as to her exit storyline have yet to emerge and producers are keeping tight-lipped over the plot.

Speaking of her decision, she said:"EastEnders has been wonderful to me and it's no secret that it changed my life all of those years ago. I'll be so sad to leave Peggy behind; she's such a wonderful character to play. I have had the pleasure of working with a marvellous cast and crew and have made many lasting good friends. To have had the honour of showing the Queen around the set is something that will stay with me forever."

She continued: "I would like to thank the BBC for the incredible opportunity they gave me and above all, I must thank the wonderful viewers for their support over the years. I'm looking forward to the future and I suppose when all's said and done, I should spend a bit more time with my old man as he's not getting any younger."

Executive producer Diederick Santer said of the announcement: "Barbara has contributed so much to EastEnders over the last 15 years, plus countless episodes, and countless amazing storylines. Peggy Mitchell is a truly iconic character, and along with Steve McFadden and Ross Kemp, Barbara has made the Mitchells the premier family of British soap.

"I so much enjoy working with her, catching up with the gossip, listening to her stories, talking about the show, benefiting from her advice, and most importantly revelling in her powerful, funny, passionate performances. All of us at EastEnders and our audience are going to miss her hugely."

BBC's controller of drama John Yorke added: "To most of the British public, Barbara IS EastEnders and it's almost impossible to imagine Albert Square without her. For 15 years she's given her heart and soul to EastEnders - she's been a consummate professional, a national treasure and a joy to work alongside. We will all miss her hugely - both as a character, and as a friend."

Windsor's on-screen husband Larry Lamb (Archie Mitchell) will exit the soap in an upcoming dramatic festive plot.

Earlier this year, Windsor was recognised with the Lifetime Achievement trophy at the British Soap Awards.

Source - Digital Spy


Anonymous said…
I will be extremely sorry to see Peggy go as she has been wonderful to watch over the years.

I cannot imagine who could possibly replace her as the Vic's feisty landlady. It would be a real shame to kill off her character but the only possibility I could suggest is that Sharon and Grant return simultaneously for her funeral and get back together and run the pub.

Phil should do us all a favour and get together properly with Shirley and he, Ben and Shirley live together elsewhere.

Billy should get together with Heather and they should move in together, along with Jay.

What would really annoy Phil would be for Grant to become best friends with Jack and for Jack and Ronnie to marry therefore she, Roxy and baby Amy could move in with Jack and Roxy could get together with the dishy young doctor.

That just leaves Sam and we all know that Ricky is best suited to Bianca so unfortunately all I can suggest for her is a long stretch in jail - oops!

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