Entertainment & Arts

EastEnders' Peggy bowing out with explosive plot

Barbara Windsor as Peggy Mitchell
Image caption Barbara Windsor has played the Albert Square matriarch since 1994

An explosive EastEnders plot that will see the departure of Peggy Mitchell, played by Barbara Windsor, has begun.

Windsor, 73, announced she was leaving the show last October, so she could spend more time with her husband.

On Thursday Peggy watched the Queen Vic pub go up in flames, marking the end of 16 years of brawls and bust-ups behind the bar during her tenure on the show.

Thursday's episode ended with her saying "Let it burn" as flames engulfed the pub.

The inferno began after Peggy's son Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden), who has become a drug addict, set fire to the pub.

Dramatic pictures released in advance of transmission showed the moment Peggy realised her son was trapped by the flames.

Writers have refused to disclose whether any characters will die as a result of the fire.

In a statement released last year, Windsor said: "I'll be so sad to leave Peggy behind. EastEnders has been wonderful to me and it's no secret that it changed my life all of those years ago."

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