EastEnders bids a final farewell to one of its most famous characters on Friday 15 February when Dr Harold Legg dies, marking the last appearance of actor Leonard Fenton 34 years after he first played the Walford GP.
Dr Legg, who appeared in the soap’s very first episode back in 1985, returned in 2018 more than a decade after his last appearance to deliver the sad news to old friend Dot Branning (June Brown) he was dying of cancer.
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As he refused treatment and faced up to his terminal diagnosis, the avuncular medic briefly moved back to Albert Square to live with Dot and her granddaughter Sonia Fowler (Natalie Cassidy). Things didn’t get off to a good start with Mrs B’s other lodger Stuart Highway (Ricky Champ) when he was blamed for vandalising the house and targeting him with racist abuse, but the reformed bad boy proved he wasn’t to blame and brought the real culprits to justice, so all was forgiven.
On Thursday 14 February, Harold is back in hospital and Sonia tells her stepgrandmother that is where he wants to spend his final days, not back at the house. Upset Dot asks for Stuart’s help in trying to change his mind, and on Friday 15 February frail Dr Legg returns to his old neighbourhood.
As the residents welcome him he shows Sonia one of his most treasured possessions – a medallion given to him by his father to him and his beloved late wife, Judith.
There are emotional scenes when Dr Legg is touched as Dot gives him a thoughtful gift, leading him to share some poignant memories of his life before he passes away peacefully with Mrs Branning at his side…
Who is coming back to EastEnders for Dr Legg’s funeral?
His death marks a true end of an era for EastEnders – since the character retired in 1997 he has made a number of guest appearances including the funerals of Ethel Skinner in 2000 and Mark Fowler in 2004. Before 2018’s final comeback, his last storyline was in 2007 when Dot turned to her old confidante as she contemplated keeping an abandoned baby boy she found on the doorsteps of a church.
EastEnders will be marking his demise with the return of more familiar faces who come to pay their respects at his funeral – Lofty Holloway (Tom Watt) and Mary ‘the punk’ Smith (Linda Davidson) have reprised their roles for the first time in more than 30 years in upcoming episodes as a tribute to the Walford icon.
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