Dame Barbara Windsor to return to EastEnders for the very last time…

EastEnders legend, Dame Barbara Windsor is to return to EastEnders, but this time it will be the last as Peggy Mitchell bows out from Walford forever.

Viewers saw a surprise return from Barbara in last night’s episode (Friday 15th January) in which Peggy admitted to her son, Phil, that the cancer she had previously won the battle with has returned. However, sadly, this time Peggy will not win the fight. These scenes were secretly filmed in November 2015 and it is the start of what will be Barbara’s final episodes in EastEnders.

The decision for Peggy to have her final swan song was made by Barbara last summer and since then the storyline has been planned with Barbara’s input.

Talking about leaving Peggy behind forever, Barbara said “Everyone knows I love EastEnders and that will never change. Peggy is a character close to my heart but I made the decision a while ago that I need to say goodbye to Peggy once and for all as otherwise she will always be there, urging me to go back and that is something I need to shut the door on. After thinking long and hard about it, I realised that it is time for me and the audience to say our final farewells to the lady who I have loved for many years and I thought that whilst the guvnor, who I adore, is still in charge I want him to be the one to oversee it. I am grateful that Dominic has accepted my decision and together, since late last summer, we have been secretly plotting Peggy’s last scenes.”

Dominic Treadwell-Collins, Executive Producer adds: “Barbara is the real guvnor of EastEnders. So when she told me her decision back in the summer, we both had a little cry before getting excited about how Peggy Mitchell, the matriarch to end all matriarchs could bid her final farewell to Albert Square.

"In Peggy Mitchell, Barbara has created one of the greatest ever characters on British television, someone who has become as synonymous with EastEnders as The Queen Vic itself. So this is the end of an EastEnders era. But it is also an opportunity to send Peggy Mitchell out in style in what will be one of the most heartbreaking, uplifting and epic exits an EastEnders character has ever had.

"We can't wait to have Barbara back at EastEnders, even if it is for the final time. The most professional of professionals on set and off, and a true friend, we have all been working harder than ever to make Barbara and Peggy Mitchell proud.”

Peggy’s final scenes are set to transmit in the late spring of 2015.

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  • Comment number 22. Posted by ActionMan

    on 18 Jan 2016 12:35

    Goodbye Peggy Mitchell :'(

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  • Comment number 21. Posted by Princess Lioness

    on 17 Jan 2016 15:46

    Well said Dave. May I also congratulate Barbara on her damehood. Definitely well deserved. I also agree that actor 🎭 Steve McFadden's acting has been superb. It's a shame that Dame Barbara Windsor's scenes are coming to an end. I just have every faith in her to do the rest of her scenes justice on EE.

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  • Comment number 20. Posted by Dave

    on 17 Jan 2016 10:11

    First of all congratulations to Barbara for her Damehood, well deserved. Well keep secret on Barbara's return to EE. When Peggy said she was dying, my immediate thought was liver transplant for Phil! I know the scripts probably have already been written on Peggy exit, but it would be a great exit to give her son the gift of life! Also I know Ross Kemp has never returned to EE, but it would be a fitting tribute if for just one episode he did a surprise return for the funeral, perhaps that is just one return too much.
    So far the acting of Steve Mcfadden has been superb.

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  • Comment number 19. Posted by EmmaEllick

    on 17 Jan 2016 08:54

    Let's all form a protective circle around Dot! :D

    One good thing to come out of this is the potential for a Pat and Peggy spin off in the great bar of the soap sky. Definitely the end of an era.

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  • Comment number 18. Posted by EastEnd Walford

    on 17 Jan 2016 03:39

    No ;( Peggy is Walford's finest creation, i hope we get her taking on Claudette, before she passes and for Grant and Sam to come back for Peggy to have her family support her, EastEnders has been completely ace lately brilliant acting throughout, guys don't worry Peggy's exit will be sad obviously but im sure unforgettable a true tribute to a much awarded legend RIP Peggy

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  • Comment number 17. Posted by eastenders rock5

    on 16 Jan 2016 20:13

    Eastenders won't be the same without Peggy Mitchell.

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  • Comment number 16. Posted by sneckwilk1982

    on 16 Jan 2016 19:47

    Babbra wisdor eastenders would not have been eastenders without your wisdom of good and long hard work over the past 30 years I love the one word you always said even love them or dislike them but I love the words get out of my pub well these sayings can only be said by peggie Mitchell and canot be used has the women crown queen vic for her last farewell eastenders no one takes that away from my eastenders gran she's is the one and only true Mitchell can help Phil storey line so let her help him and the rest of the family to get the vic back to where the vic belongs and that peggie Mitchell I alway loved having you around and god hope the future is has bright has you peggie Mitchell sadly yous all have to move on and new ones comes in but no one will ever be has the good actor you all ways has been

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  • Comment number 15. Posted by bearcat

    on 16 Jan 2016 19:11

    Barbara is of of the great ladies is show business. I met her briefly in a London restaurant while on vacation, and she was so gracious; chatting with me about what I was going to see that evening (it was Betty Blue Eyes) and whether I was enjoying my time in London. She also took a picture with me, insisting that my husband be in it as well (we are a gay couple). That picture is framed and sitting in place of honor. I have been watching Eastenders from the beginning, and I am from the USA. We are still back in 2006 with our Eastenders episodes, so I can still look forward to seeing PEGGY for some time yet, but I know how much she will be missed in Britain. I wish her well with many years of happiness and fulfillment.

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  • Comment number 14. Posted by LaneysSis

    on 16 Jan 2016 17:24

    Finally DTC is doing something right. I don't mean having Peggy die, but at least a story line that is up to the EE standards. Peggy just couldn't let Pat get one past her could she ! I get it, we all get it but I agree an end to an era. Of course Grant will be back and that would be quite a feather in DTC's cap. And what a diversion to the nut-job we know as Bobby and Ian and Jane going to prison ! Well done !

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  • Comment number 13. Posted by Ollie

    on 16 Jan 2016 16:27

    All good things must come to an end. This truly the end of an era.

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