Bobby Beale is set to cause a stir this summer when he returns to Albert Square following a three-year stint behind bars.
The character will be played by newcomer Clay Milner Russell who has taken over the role from Eliot Carrington.
Bobby was at the centre of one of EastEnders’ most talked-about storylines; the murder of his sister, Lucy. Unaware that he had killed her during a heated argument, Bobby called his mum Jane for help. Despite realising that Lucy was already dead, Jane lied to Bobby to protect him.
Having moved Lucy’s body from the Beale’s house to Walford Common, Jane retained sole knowledge of Bobby’s crime for almost a year until the truth was finally revealed to viewers – and to a stunned Ian and Peter – during a dramatic week of live episodes which marked EastEnders’ 30th anniversary in February 2015.
As Bobby continued to exhibit worrying behaviour, Ian and Jane eventually found that they could no longer keep what he had done from him. Ian and Jane sent Bobby away to boarding school but after learning that his future at the school wasn’t guaranteed, Bobby lashed out with a hockey stick and attacked his mum. As the police probed what had happened to Jane, Bobby confessed to everything and received a custodial sentence for his crimes.
Earlier this year, viewers saw a surprised Ian and Kathy learn that Bobby will be released this summer after three years in prison. As Bobby heads back to Walford, Kathy is delighted to welcome her grandson home. But, how will the residents of Walford react to his return, in particular Max Branning who was wrongly imprisoned for Lucy’s murder, and how will Bobby settle back into Walford life?
“Clay is an exciting new talent with a charisma and an intensity that injects a new energy into the fascinating character of Bobby Beale. We can’t wait for audiences to see Bobby return home and the impact his arrival will have on the Square.” – Jon Sen, Executive Producer
Clay Milner Russell has started filming with the BBC One soap and his first scenes are set to air in the coming weeks.