Dot Branning's death was announced in an emotional episode of EastEnders tonight.


The iconic busybody has been living in Ireland with her grandson Charlie Cotton and his family since 2020 when the character was last seen on screen in Walford.

Actress June Brown had departed the soap at the time and died earlier this year at the age of 95.

In Thursday night's episodes (1st December 2022), Dot's step-grandaughter Sonia Fowler (Natalie Cassidy) missed numerous phone calls before finally picking up a house phone call where Charlie revealed to her that Dot had died.

After this, Sonia visited the Queen Vic pub amid the celebrations for Albert Square's Christmas lights being switched on and interrupted drama involving her friend Janine Butcher (Charlie Brooks).

Accompanied by friend Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth) and Dot's troublesome granddaughter Dotty Cotton (Milly Zero), Sonia announced that Dot had died - to the shock and sadness of many Albert Square residents, including Martin Fowler (James Bye), Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean), and Patrick Trueman (Rudolph Walker).

Sonia revealed: "She had dinner with Charlie and her great-grandkids, had a final ciggie, and went up to bed with a paracetamol. Last thing she said was, 'I've got one of my heads coming on.'"

Sharon noted they had heard that phrase many times over the years, but Janine commented that it was true this time.

"She didn't suffer," continued Sonia, "She fell asleep, peacefully. Charlie found her this morning. Rollers in. Packet of fags and her Bible next to her."

After this, Dotty broke down in tears that her grandmother was gone, being comforted by her uncle Tom 'Rocky' Cotton (Brian Conley) who had recently fallen out with Dotty over her scamming of his friend Harvey Monroe (Ross Boatman).

The other customers in the pub noted how Dot had been 86 when she died and had a "good innings", and all fondly remembered her.

Sonia Fowler holds a photo of Dot Branning, Jim Branning, Robbie Jackson and herself in the Queen Vic
Sonia Fowler holds a photo of Dot Branning, Jim Branning, Robbie Jackson and herself in the Queen Vic. BBC

Patrick also fondly remembered Dot and noted that she would be joining her late husband and his best friend Jim Branning now, and suggested they drink and give her something to "disapprove of".

Across the Square, Jim's son Jack Branning (Scott Maslen) learned of Dot's passing and his daughter Amy Mitchell posted on social media about her death, with the family having planned to visit her in Ireland for Christmas.

However, Amy's post led to her being bullied on social media - but this was not seen by her family.

As the Christmas lights were turned on, the Square remembered Dot once again as Mick Carter (Danny Dyer) spoke of her in his speech.

Finally, Sonia returned home to Dot's house after being offered words of comfort by Kathy.

In Dot's living room, Sonia walked over to the window and picked up a framed photo of herself and her brother Robbie Jackson with Dot and Jim in Queen Vic.

Natalie Cassidy as Sonia Fowler in EastEnders.
Sonia (Natalie Cassidy) mournfully says goodnight to Dot Branning in EastEnders. BBC

Sonia then walked to leave the living room and mournfully said: "Goodnight, Dot."

After closing the door, the end credits of the episode rolled in silence before fading to black in respect to the late character and her actress, June Brown.

Next week, Sonia will work to plan Dot's funeral and will be grieving throughout, but we will hear Dot's voice one last time as a recording is played from the character.

Dot's funeral the week after will see a number of classic characters return to Albert Square to pay their respects to the beloved Walford figure.

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