With the news that Danny Dyer and Kellie Bright are to join EastEnders as Mick and Linda Carter, the new owners of The Queen Victoria, let’s take a look at some of the other characters who have called the Vic their own…
The first on-screen landlord was Den Watts, a local small time wheeler dealer who ran the brewery (Luxford & Copley) owned boozer with his alcoholic wife Angie and adopted daughter Sharon. (Pictured in a rare 1985 colour press released photo: L-R: Angie (Anita Dobson), Den (Leslie Grantham) and Sharon (Letitia Dean)
Frank (Mike Reid) and Pat Butcher (Pam St.Clement) tried their hand as Landlord and landlady in 1988 in a two year reign at the boozer. However Frank’s business interests grew and a change in 1990 saw the couple move over to a fully-owned B&B in the square. For a brief time Sharon Watts and Pat’s son Simon ‘Wicksy’ Wicks (Nick Berry) ran the bar until a new brewery tenant took it over…
Eddie Royle (Michael Melia) was a short-lived landlord on behalf of the brewery. Arriving in 1990 he set about changing everything about the pub – even its name. He alienated the regulars, annoyed barmaid Sharon Watts and annoyed even-more her hubby-to-be Grant Mitchell (Ross Kemp). In 1991 before the vic could get its new name – Eddie was murdered by drug addict Nick Cotton (John Altman).
After the demise of Eddie Royle the pub was sold off by the brewery to the Mitchell family, at that time consisting of Sharon and Grant and his brother Phil. (Steve McFadden). In 1992 the pub is entirely renovated following Grant burning the place down for insurance, nearly smoking out Sharon in the process. It wasn’t to be a long-lived tenure as Sharon began an affair with Phil which ended her marriage to Grant.
In 1994 the Mitchell brothers had their mother Peggy (Barbara Windsor) buy-into the bar, she would become the longest serving landlady of the Queen Victoria in its long history. There were others who bought in and sold out over the years but Peggy remained as the central figure for most of the time. In 1999 former landlord Frank Butcher marries Peggy and for a spell joins her in the bar.
In 2001 Frank left Peggy with mounting debts and she for a time is forced to sell the pub – to Steve Owen (Martin Kemp) or so Peggy thought, in actual fact it was a joint purchase between Steve and Peggy’s much disliked former daughter-in-law Sharon. Sharon running her former childhood family home once again proved short lived and by 2002 Phil Mitchell has taken back the bar for his mother. She installed Alfie Moon (Shane Richie) as manager.
In 2004, Den Watts tricked his way into gaining ownership of the The Queen Vic, but within a few months he was killed by his second wife Chrissie (Tracy-Ann Oberman), following his death the boozer is left to his heir Sharon, who sells it to Peggy and Phil Mitchell wanting nothing more to do with the cursed premises..
In 2010 Peggy bid Walford farewell following the pub’s second blaze and a family failing apart. The place remains in the ownership of Phil Mitchell, and a face who had previously worked for Peggy returns as its latest landlord – Alfie Moon. For a cheeky cockney chap there isn’t much of a knees-up in the Vic and his time proves one long line of heartache, especially when his marriage to Kat (Jessie Wallace) falls apart.
2014 will see The Queen Victoria once again in the hands of a family as Mick and Linda Carter take over the bar. (Pictured: L-R: Kellie Bright and Danny Dyer)