Penny Branning is returning to Walford in yet another surprise twist by EastEnders.


The daughter of Jack Branning (played by Scott Maslen) has lived abroad for 15 years but will return in the coming weeks to Albert Square.

Fans will remember she's always had a troubled relationship with Jack and has been living in France with her mum, Selina.

But she's returning to the East End with Lauren Branning (Jacqueline Jossa) - but what has brought them back?

Furthermore, in the promo picture below, why are they both wearing all black? Are they attending a funeral? And is it for the Christmas victim? Say it isn't Jack, EastEnders!

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Penny will be played by Kitty Castledine, a rising star who has recently graduated from London Academy of Music and Drama (LAMDA) only this summer.

The role was previously played by Mia McKenna-Bruce, who is now starring in the acclaimed film How to Have Sex.

Penny is Jack's only child from his first marriage to Selina Branning (Daisy Beaumont) and was left paralysed from the waist down when one of Jack's criminal associates ran her down and left her for dead.

After guest appearances in 2008, Selina moved to France with Penny later that year, but Penny visited and caused trouble between Jack and his on-off love interest Ronnie Mitchell (Samantha Womack), with Penny preferring her dad's other love interest at the time - his sister-in-law, Tanya Branning (Jo Joyner).

In 2013, Jack left Walford for two years and went to live in France near Penny.

Penny Branning and Lauren Branning outside the Queen Vic. They're dressed all in black.

Speaking of joining the show, Castledine said: “I didn’t expect to start my EastEnders journey so soon out of drama school – I can’t actually believe it! My whole family are EastEnders fans, and I remember sitting on my Nanny Kay’s lap to tune in, and now they get to watch me in Albert Square.

"The inclusion of disabled talent on screen is so important to me as a wheelchair user, so I’m thrilled to be playing a character as feisty and cool as Penny. She’s thrown into the middle of the drama immediately, and I can’t wait to see what she gets up to.”

EastEnders Executive Producer Chris Clenshaw added: “It’s been a long time since Penny Branning was in Walford, and she’s a very different person from the one our viewers might remember. Kitty is a terrific addition to the show, and we’re looking forward to seeing Penny back in Albert Square.”

Clenshaw had previously hinted that Lauren wouldn't be returning alone, but few would've guessed it would spell the return of Penny, with some wondering if her devious dad, Max (Jake Wood) would be back.

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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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