Cindy Beale has finally made her dramatic return to EastEnders.


The character was killed off-screen in 1998 but it was revealed in the press earlier this year that actress Michelle Collins would be reprising her iconic role as Cindy Beale opposite former on-screen husband Adam Woodyatt as Ian Beale.

Since the news broke, the arrival of George Knight (Colin Salmon) and his daughters Gina (Francesca Henry) and Anna (Molly Rainford) prompted a new mystery surrounding the mysterious whereabouts of his wife Rose who vanished nine years ago and some wondered if she was Cindy after all.

George is now engaged to Queen Vic landlady Elaine Peacock (Harriet Thorpe) but her daughter Linda Carter (Kellie Bright) suspected that George had something to do with Rose’s disappearance.

Earlier this week, Linda enlisted the help of George’s prospective business partner and new friend Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) to uncover the truth about George.

More like this

In turn, Phil asked his son-in-law and police officer Callum Highway (Tony Clay) to check George and Rose’s pasts out. While George’s record seemed mostly clean, Callum was barred from accessing Rose’s records and later got a visit from special crimes unit detective DCI Mary Nicholls (Penny Layden) who warned him off of the case.

In Wednesday’s episode, Phil turned to his trusted lawyer Ritchie Scott (Sian Webber) to use her contacts to find the truth.

Read More

In the Queen Vic, Phil confronted George and Linda and revealed that Rose had been found but did not want anything to do with her family, upsetting George and allaying Linda’s fears.

However, Phil returned later after closing to speak to George alone and revealed that he had uncovered the real truth about Rose and his earlier revelations were for Linda’s benefit.

Cindy Beale sits beside a pool in a sun lounger with a glass of wine.
Cindy Beale sits beside a pool in a sun lounger with a glass of wine. BBC

Phil told George that Rose Knight never existed and the woman he knew was not who she said she was.

After Phil’s exit from the pub, George tidied up before pouring himself a drink and putting on Seal’s Kiss from a Rose on the jukebox.

George then found Rose’s phone number in his phone and called it, but got no answer.

The soap then cut to a glamorous poolside scene as a woman lifted her phone to see that George was calling but declined the call.

Michelle Collins as Cindy Beale in EastEnders.
Michelle Collins as Cindy Beale aka Rose Knight in EastEnders. BBC

The camera then closed in to reveal the woman as Cindy Beale before she pensively sipped on her white wine.

So, Cindy Beale is indeed Rose Knight, which means that her daughters Gina and Anna are half-sisters of her other children Peter Beale and Cindy Williams, Jr.

Two of Cindy's other children, Steven and Lucy Beale, died in 2014 and 2017, respectively.

Discussing her return, Michelle Collins said: “For over 25 years I’ve constantly been asked ‘are you going back’ and now finally I can say I am! It’s an honour to be asked to reprise the role of Cindy Beale, a character that has really never left me, and just like the old days, where Cindy goes, drama usually follows”

Adam Woodyatt added: "It’s weird saying Ian’s back as it never really felt like he was gone, Ian still existed just not in Walford. Now that he is back, he needs to avoid Sharon cooking carbonara and his mum getting him cufflinks for Christmas!"

Michelle Collins as Cindy Beale in EastEnders in 1998.
Michelle Collins as Cindy Beale in EastEnders in 1998. YouTube/BBC

Chris Clenshaw, executive producer concluded: “It’s an honour to not simply welcome back just one EastEnders icon in the name of Adam Woodyatt, but to welcome Michelle Collins back to Walford to reprise her role as the legendary Cindy Beale after twenty-five years is somewhat surreal. Cindy’s been sorely missed from our screens, and we’re delighted that she’ll be returning to Walford, alongside Ian, permanently later this year.

"Now everyone knows that she is in fact Rose Knight, secrets are set to be revealed as viewers will learn about the circumstances surrounding their return, including the million dollar question - how is Cindy alive when she was declared dead in 1998 – and later this summer Ian and Cindy’s comeback will be nothing less than explosive for the Square."

We have so many questions but answers are on the way tomorrow in an extended episode.

Read more:

EastEnders airs Mondays to Thursdays at 7:30pm on BBC One and from 6am on BBC iPlayer. Visit our dedicated EastEnders page for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers. If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV Guide and Streaming Guide.

Take part in the Screen Test, a project from Radio Times and the Universities of Sussex and Brighton, to explore the role of television and audio in our lives.


Try Radio Times magazine today and get 12 issues for only £1 with delivery to your home – subscribe now. For more from the biggest stars in TV, listen to The Radio Times Podcast.