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Alison Slade

EastEnders summer preview 2023: 5 BIGGEST twists coming to Walford

The Albert Square sign on the set of EastEnders

With the Albert Square residents surrounded by explosive drama every day, summer is set to be no different in EastEnders as more bombshells will cause chaos in Walford.

It's time for Cindy Beale to wreak havoc in the soap once more as she makes her hotly anticipated comeback this summer after being killed off 25 years ago. 

Meanwhile, there's a big summer in store for the Slater family with terrible secrets exposed and a dramatic soap wedding for a beloved couple which sees an unwelcome guest gate-crash the ceremony.

Read on for all the huge twists coming to Walford this summer...

Cindy Beale arrives in Walford

Cindy Beale will make an explosive comeback to Walford after 25 years. (Image credit: BBC)

The soap story of 2023 is the revelation that Walford’s iconic minx Cindy Beale is George Knight’s AWOL wife ‘Rose’ and has been living in France with ex-hubby Ian Beale and their son Peter under a witness protection programme.

Cindy (Michelle Collins), Ian (Adam Woodyatt) and Peter (Thomas Law) will return to Albert Square in late summer (though it’s possible Ian will also put in an appearance at mum Kathy’s wedding to Rocky next week), and we can’t wait for the inevitable fireworks. 

Will George (Colin Salmon) remain committed to a future with Elaine Peacock (Harriet Thorpe), or will Mr Knight find himself drawn back to his former lover and mother of his girls? 

Freddie Slater unearths a terrible secret 

Freddie Slater will discover a horrible secret about his family history. (Image credit: BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron)

In the coming weeks, young Freddie Slater (Bobby Brazier) will finally discover that his biological father is a rapist, but how will he cope with the shocking news about his past? And could his discovery lead to the return of his mum, Little Mo Slater? 

Wedding horror

Will Kathy Beale and Rocky Cotton's wedding end in disaster as an unwelcome guest intercepts the ceremony. (Image credit: BBC)

We have Rocky Cotton and Kathy’s nuptials where there is an unexpected guest who makes a surprise return — which is none other than Rocky's estranged wife Jo Cotton (Vicki Michelle). But what does she want and is she about to wreck the wedding?

EastEnders boss Chris Clenshaw also dropped a huge teaser about when we need to keep a close eye on everyone's cufflinks that were seen in the Christmas flashforward episode. He said: "We have Kathy and Rocky's wedding coming up, which sees an unexpected guest happen to turn up... and watch out for the cufflinks around these episodes...!"

Theo Hawthorne's true intentions are revealed  

Theo Hawthorne will be caught out for stalking Stacey Slater. (Image credit: BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron)

Stacey Slater (Lacey Turner) is oblivious to the fact that Lily Slater's (Lillia Turner) teacher, Theo, is the anonymous client who has been paying her for explicit photos and is tutoring her pregnant daughter as a way to get closer to her.

But as his obsessive behaviour spirals, it's only an amount of time before his sinister intentions are exposed, with many fans believing that he'll end up being the Christmas murder victim.

"We have a big Slater summer with the intentions behind Theo which will be revealed…" Chris Clenshaw told us.

Health scare for Alfie Moon? 

Could Alfie Moon's health be on a downward spiral? (Image credit: BBC)

Show boss Chris Clenshaw has promised a "tough road ahead" for Alfie Moon (Shane Richie). Could a health crisis be on the cards, perhaps? And if so, could old feelings be reignited between him and Kat Slater (Jessie Wallace)?

EastEnders airs Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings at 7.30 pm on BBC One — see our TV Guide for full listings. You can also catch up on episodes on BBC iPlayer now. 

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