BBC soap EastEnders aired a special episode set in France tonight (22nd June 2023) as viewers were brought up to date with what Cindy Beale (Michelle Collins) has been doing for the past 25 years.


The iconic Walford resident was killed off-screen in prison in the nineties, but in an unprecedented move, she's back, and has been living under witness protection.

However, the criminal she was hiding from is now dead, meaning her need to adopt a new persona, Rose Knight, is over.

While the Beales were playing happy families, the witness protection bombshell was not the end of the drama.

Ian (Adam Woodyatt) was desperate to get back to Walford, considering that's where his son and mother are, but Cindy, who's spent recent years in hiding, wasn't so sure.

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An argument broke out between the pair and it wasn't long before it took its toll on Ian - who writhed around in agony clutching his chest.

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It transpired that Ian had had a heart attack, and was rushed to hospital.

While there, Lauren Branning (Jacqueline Jossa) discovered Cindy was still alive, and realised Peter had been lying to her about who Rose was.

Cindy Beale looking serious
Michelle Collins as Cindy Beale.

While the drama was happening outside the hospital room, inside it, Ian watched a video of Bobby and Freddie at the Father's Day karaoke, only to make a shocking discovery.

Staring intently at the screen, he realised the new landlord of the Vic was actually his love rival, George, with Cindy's daughters Anna and Gina in tow!

Cindy and Ian later caught up and the former admitted she might fancy a trip back to Walford after all.

"Maybe you're right," Cindy revealed. "It's the only place I ever felt safe, settled. The only place that ever felt like home."

Scared of losing Cindy to George, Ian quickly changed his tactics.

He said: "I was thinking maybe you're right - I've been looking at it from rose-coloured [glasses]. Start thinking about it and then I end up in here. Seeing all the old haunts, I just started wondering is it the right place for us after all?"

It's been confirmed they will return to Walford, but what will take them back there? When will they rock up? And what on earth will George make of it all?

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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.

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