Title Card - First Episode 1985.jpg

1985 was EastEnders' first year of production. The series premiered on 19th February, created by Julia Smith and Tony Holland.

Main characters

Ranking Character Played by Duration Number of Episodes
1 Pete Beale Peter Dean From February 83
Den Watts Leslie Grantham
Arthur Fowler Bill Treacher
2 Pauline Fowler Wendy Richard 81
3 Michelle Fowler Susan Tully 80
4 Angie Watts Anita Dobson 78
Kathy Beale Gillian Taylforth
5 Ali Osman Nejdet Salih 77
6 Debbie Wilkins Shirley Cheriton From March 73
Tony Carpenter Oscar James From February
Sue Osman Sandy Ratcliff
Lou Beale Anna Wing
7 Kelvin Carpenter Paul J. Medford From March 71
Ethel Skinner Gretchen Franklin From February
8 George 'Lofty' Holloway Tom Watt 70
9 Ian Beale Adam Woodyatt 69
10 Andy O'Brien Ross Davidson From March 67
11 Sharon Watts Letitia Dean From February 65
12 Mary Smith Linda Davidson From March 64
13 Saeed Jeffery Andrew Johnson February-December 62
14 Doctor Harold Legg Leonard Fenton From February 61
15 Naima Jeffery Shreela Ghosh 42
16 Dot Cotton June Brown From July 40
17 Nick Cotton John Altman February-March, August-November 37
18 Annie Smith Zara Posener

Jenna Alembick

From March 28
19 Hassan Osman Michael Evangelou February-June 22
20 Simon 'Wicksy' Wicks Nick Berry From October 21
21 Martin Fowler Jon Peyton-Price From August 18
22 Mark Fowler David Scarboro February-April, December 11
23 Hannah Carpenter Sally Sagoe From June 9
24 Cassie Carpenter Delanie Forbes From November 8
25 Chris Smith Alan O'Keefe May, December 5
26 Mehmet Osman Haulk Bilginer June 3
27 Guizin Osman Ishia Bennison October 1



"There was anxiety at first that the viewing public would not accept a new soap set in the south of England."

Julia Smith and Tony Holland

In March 1983, under two years before EastEnders' first episode was broadcast, the show was a vague idea in the mind of a handful of BBC executives, who decided that what BBC1 needed was a popular bi-weekly drama series that would attract the kind of mass audiences that ITV was getting with Coronation Street. The first people to whom David Reid, then head of series and serials, turned were Julia Smith and Tony Holland, a well-established producer/script editor team who had first worked together on Z-Cars. The outline that Reid presented was vague: two episodes a week, 52 weeks a year. After the concept was put to them on 14th March 1983, Smith and Holland then went about putting their ideas down on paper; they decided the setting would be in the East End of London. Granada Television gave Smith unrestricted access to the Coronation Street production for a month so that she could get a sense how a continuing drama was produced. There was anxiety at first that the viewing public would not accept a new soap set in the south of England, though research commissioned by lead figures in the BBC revealed that southerners would accept a northern soap, northerners would accept a southern soap and those from the Midlands.

The show's creators were both Londoners, but when they researched Victorian squares, they found massive changes in areas both thought they knew well. However, delving further into the East End of London, they found precisely what they had been searching for: a real East End spirit—an inward-looking quality, a distrust of strangers and authority figures, a sense of territory and community that the creators summed up as "Hurt one of us and you hurt us all".

"They had 14 days in which to create 23 characters and enough storylines to sustain the show through its first months."

Formal commission

The Young Members of the Cast in 1984

The target launch date was originally January 1985. Smith and Holland had eleven months in which to write, cast and shoot the whole thing. However, in February 1984, they did not even have a title or a place to film. Both Smith and Holland were unhappy about the January 1985 launch date, favouring November or even September 1984 when seasonal audiences would be higher.

The project had some working titles — Square Dance, Round the Square, Round the Houses, London Pride and East 8. It was the latter that stuck (E8 is the postcode for Hackney) in the early months of the creative process. However, the show reluctantly renamed after many casting agents mistakenly thought the show was to be called Estate, and the fictional postcode E20 sprang to life, instead of using E8. Julia Smith came up with the name Eastenders after she and Holland had spent months telephoning theatrical agents and asking "Do you have any real East Enders on your books?" However, Smith thought "Eastenders" "looked ugly written down" and was "hard to say", so decided to capitalise the second 'e.'


After they decided on the filming location of BBC Elstree Centre in Hertfordshire, Smith and Holland set about creating the 23 characters needed, in just 14 days. They took a holiday in Playa de Los Pocillos, Lanzarote, and started to create the characters.

The Beale and Fowler family.

Holland created the Beale and Fowler family, drawing on his background. His mother, Ethel Holland, was one of four sisters raised in Walthamstow. Her eldest sister, Lou, had married a man named Albert Beale and had two children, named Peter and Pauline. These family members were the basis for Lou Beale, Pete Beale and Pauline Fowler. Holland also created Pauline's unemployed husband Arthur Fowler, their children Mark Fowler and Michelle Fowler, Pete's wife Kathy Beale and their son Ian Beale.

Smith used her memories of East End residents she met when researching Victorian squares. Ethel Skinner was based on an old woman she met in a pub, with ill-fitting false teeth, and a "face to rival a neon sign", holding a Yorkshire Terrier in one hand and a pint of Guinness in the other. Other characters created included Jewish doctor Harold Legg, the Anglo-Cypriot Osman family, Ali Osman, Sue Osman and baby Hassan Osman, black father and son, Tony Carpenter and Kelvin Carpenter, single mother Mary Smith and Bangladeshi couple Saeed Jeffery and Naima Jeffery. Jack, Pearl and Tracey Watts were created to bring "flash, trash, and melodrama" to the Square (they were later renamed Den, Angie and Sharon Watts).

The characters of Andy O'Brien and Debbie Wilkins were created to show a modern couple with outwardly mobile pretensions, and Lofty Holloway to show an outsider; someone who did not fit in with other residents. The decision concluded that he would be a former soldier, as Holland's personal experiences of ex-soldiers were that they had trouble fitting into society after being in the army.

When they compared the characters they had created, Smith and Holland realised they had created a cross-section of East End residents. The Beale and Fowler family represented the old families of the East End, who had always been there. The Osmans, Jefferys and Carpenters served the more modern diverse ethnic community of the East End. Debbie, Andy and Mary represented more modern-day individuals.

The show was planned to start with a bang with the death of elderly resident Reg Cox, but Smith and Holland decided that none of their existing characters was wicked enough to have killed Reg, so a 24th character, Nick Cotton was added to the line-up. He was a racist thug, who often tried to lead other young aspects astray.

The Building of Albert Square

Main article: Albert Square
Overseeing the building of the square was senior designer Keith Harris, who had spent the past 19 years working on various BBC productions. Albert Square was to be one of the largest exterior sets ever built for British TV production. From the outset, Keith worked closely with creators Julia Smith and Tony Holland. As the storylines developed, so too did the ideas for the homes and habitats of the characters. One of the first things was the exact siting of the street and houses in the square. Also taken into consideration was the amount of possible 'nuisance' that the set might cause to the surrounding neighbourhood. And so, taking all these points into account, Keith Harris took the first steps in the birth of Albert Square, by drawing up his first plans - with a stink in the sand!

Albert Square before and after construction.

The next step was the draining of the site via an elaborate system of trenches which would also carry cables for camera pick-up points around the square. Cardboard models were then produced and discussed, together with plans for the interior sets. A great deal of research went into the quest for accuracy and realism. This included following exact proportions, as laid down by Victorian architects and builders. Many photographs were taken of real Victorian squares in Hackney and Bethnal Green.

In May the site was cleared ready for the building of Albert Square. Outside contractors were called in to carry out the 'hard landscaping' of the site - laying drains, road and pavements, and erecting the steel framework for each block of dwellings. The outer shell of each building in the square was made by a small army of artisans in the BBC's construction workshop. These shells, made of plywood and plaster, were then bolted onto the rigid framework.

When finished, each structure, or block, was complete on at least three sides. Inside each one, at the first-floor level, is a metal platform used for any action involving characters at an upstairs window. Each of the buildings is strong enough to withstand high winds or heavy gales - even the roofs are fully strengthened. Thousand-and-one other details had to be attended to: period doors were brought in from a demolition company, sash window frames were constructed, together with authentic-looking drainpipes, chimney stacks and window panes. Even details of the brickwork are authentic, being made from fibreglass moulds taken from a whole East End brick wall. The same method was used for fine detail in archways, lintels, bay windows, and of slates and pilasters.

Once the set was erected, it then had to be 'aged' - after all, it was supposed to have stood there for more than a hundred years. This was achieved in a number of ways: pavements were deliberately chipped and cracked, paintwork was given a gnarled, uneven look by means of a particular chemical which breaks the top coat, damp patches were added to the underside of the railway bridge by using varnish, garden walls were made to sag and so on. The finishing touches were finally added towards the end of the summer 1984 - a telephone kiosk and telegraph pole from British telecom, lampposts from the Hertsmere Borough Council, and several cars and vans to park in the streets.

While the exterior set was being created, work was also underway on the interiors. The Queen Vic, Al's Café, the Launderette and Lou Beale's house were among the first to be built. In each set, all appliances - gas, water, etc. - were fully functional. The design of each interior began with a thorough study of the characters who would 'live' within its walls. As with the exterior, attention to detail was the keynote to a strong effect.

All the props - furniture, curtains, crockery etc. - were chosen with great care so as not to be at odds with the tastes of the characters using them. In the older homes, everything had to have its history of marks, stains, sags, scratches and so on - so that the viewers would accept and believe in them.


The cast of 1985 photographed in The Queen Victoria.

The first episode was broadcast at 7:00pm on Tuesday 19th February, both Holland and Smith could not watch. The next day, viewing figures were confirmed at 17 million, The reviews were largely favourable, although, after three weeks on air, BBC1's early evening share had returned to the pre-EastEnders figure of seven million, though EastEnders then climbed to highs of up to 23 million later on in the year.

Following the launch, both group discussions and telephone surveys were conducted to test audience reaction to early episodes. Detailed reactions were taken after six months and since then regular monitoring was conducted.

Public and press reactions

Press coverage of EastEnders, which was already intense, went into overdrive once the show was broadcast. With public interest so high, the media began investigating the private lives of the show's popular stars. Within days, a scandalous headline appeared —"EASTENDERS STAR IS A KILLER". This referred to Leslie Grantham and his prison sentence for the murder of a taxi driver in an attempted robbery nearly 20 years earlier. This shocking tell-all style set the tone for relations between Albert Square and the press for the next 20 years.

By Christmas 1985, the tabloids couldn't get enough of the show. 'Exclusives' about EastEnders storylines and the actors on the show became a staple of tabloid buyers daily reading.

Viewing figures

Ratings chart for the year

At launch, EastEnders was shown on BBC One. New Zealand became the first international country to broadcast EastEnders overseas, the first episode being shown on 27th September 1985.

The first episode was watched by 17 million viewers. Ratings fluctuated over the following months before jumping to 23.55 million for the ninetieth and second to last episode of the year. The average for the year was 14.50 million viewers.

Doof Doof Count

  • Please note: We have calculated the Doof Doofs based on which character/s appeared at the end of an episode in frame.
Character Solo Group Total Julia's Theme
Angie Watts 12 3 15 No
Kathy Beale 5 4 9 No
Den Watts 5 2 7 Yes
Pauline Fowler 5 2 7 No
Michelle Fowler 6 0 6 No
Pete Beale 3 3 6 No
Sue Osman 3 2 5 Yes
Debbie Wilkins 4 0 4 No
Ali Osman 2 2 4 Yes
Naima Jeffery 3 1 4 No
Ian Beale 1 3 4 Yes
Lou Beale 1 3 4 Yes
Saeed Jeffery 3 1 4 No
Tony Carpenter 2 2 4 No
Arthur Fowler 1 3 4 No
Kelvin Carpenter 2 1 3 No
Mark Fowler 2 1 3 No
Ethel Skinner 1 2 3 No
Nick Cotton 3 0 3 No
Mary Smith 1 1 2 No
Sharon Watts 1 1 2 No
Non character 2 0 2 No
Doctor Harold Legg 1 0 1 No
George 'Lofty' Holloway 1 0 1 No
Simon 'Wicksy' Wicks 1 0 1 No
Cassie Carpenter 0 1 1 No
Hassan Osman 0 1 1 No
Melanie 0 1 1 No
Martin Fowler 0 1 1 No
Sheena Mennell 0 1 1 No

Director and Writer Count

1985 was directed by 14 directors and written by 27 writers.


Director Total
Matthew Robinson 13
Antonia Bird 12
Sue Butterworth 10
Jeremy Ancock 6
Stephen Butcher 6
Chris Clough 6
Peter Edwards 6
Mike Gibbon 6
Brian Morgan 6
William Slater 6
Malcolm Taylor 6
Robert Gabriel 4
Julia Smith 3
Vivienne Cozens 1


Writer Total
Bill Lyons 15
Jane Hollowood 12
Valerie Georgeson 8
Michael Robartes 7
Rosemary Mason 6
Gerry Huxham 5
Tony McHale 5
Gilly Fraser 4
Jim Hawkins 4
Juliet Ace 2
Chris Anstis 2
Liane Aukin 2
Peter Batt 2
Bev Doyle 2
Harry Duffin 2
Glen McCoy 2
David Ashton 1
Susan Boyd 1
John Crisp 1
Tony Dennis 1
Frances Galleymore 1
Billy Hamon 1
Tony Holland 1
Charlie Humphreys 1
Hugh Miller 1
Christopher Russell 1
Allan Swift 1


# Ep.
Date Director Writer Doof Doof Viewers (millions)
1 1 19 February 1985 Matthew Robinson Gerry Huxham Non character, over start of credits 17.35
2 2 21 February 1985 Matthew Robinson Jane Hollowood Dr Legg 14.45
3 3 26 February 1985 Vivienne Cozens Valerie Georgeson Sue Osman 14.20
4 4 28 February 1985 Matthew Robinson Bill Lyons Angie Watts 12.61
5 5 5 March 1985 Peter Edwards Jane Hollowood Non character, Nazi badge 13.90
6 6 7 March 1985 Peter Edwards Jane Hollowood Mark Fowler 10.82
7 7 12 March 1985 Matthew Robinson Gerry Huxham Pete Beale
Kathy Beale
Arthur Fowler
Ethel Skinner
Lou Beale
Pauline Fowler
8 8 14 March 1985 Matthew Robinson Gerry Huxham Angie Watts 11.43
9 9 19 March 1985 Sue Butterworth Rosemary Mason Angie Watts and Kathy Beale walk out of The Queen Victoria. 12.81
10 10 21 March 1985 Sue Butterworth Jim Hawkins Ali Osman 12.14
11 11 26 March 1985 Peter Edwards Jim Hawkins Nick Cotton 12.05
12 12 28 March 1985 Peter Edwards Gilly Fraser Mark Fowler 10.59
13 13 2 April 1985 Matthew Robinson Michael Robartes Mary Smith 12.20
14 14 4 April 1985 Matthew Robinson Valerie Georgeson Kelvin Carpenter
Sharon Watts
15 15 9 April 1985 Sue Butterworth Bill Lyons Pete Beale 12.50
16 16 11 April 1985 Sue Butterworth Glen McCoy Lou Beale
Ian Beale
(No duff duff, Julia's Theme)
17 17 16 April 1985 Peter Edwards Christopher Russell Kathy Beale 11.00
18 18 18 April 1985 Peter Edwards Bill Lyons Pauline Fowler 10.90
19 19 23 April 1985 Malcolm Taylor Valerie Georgeson Angie Watts 9.80
20 20 25 April 1985 Malcolm Taylor Michael Robartes Angie Watts
Tony Carpenter
21 21 30 April 1985 Jeremy Ancock Frances Galleymore Pauline Fowler
Arthur Fowler
22 22 2 May 1985 Jeremy Ancock Bill Lyons Angie Watts 11.85
23 23 7 May 1985 Sue Butterworth Bev Doyle Kelvin Carpenter 12.55
24 24 9 May 1985 Sue Butterworth Valerie Georgeson Pete Beale
Kathy Beale
25 25 14 May 1985 Malcolm Taylor Jane Hollowood Sharon Watts 12.50
26 26 16 May 1985 Malcolm Taylor Juliet Ace Angie Watts 11.25
27 27 21 May 1985 Jeremy Ancock Bill Lyons Den Watts
Angie Watts
28 28 23 May 1985 Jeremy Ancock Tony Dennis Kelvin Carpenter 11.80
29 29 28 May 1985 Sue Butterworth Bill Lyons Arthur Fowler 8.34

(Average for that week)

30 30 30 May 1985 Sue Butterworth Tony McHale Pauline Fowler
31 31 4 June 1985 Malcolm Taylor Rosemary Mason Tony Carpenter (Camera pan across Albert Square) 11.50
32 32 6 June 1985 Malcolm Taylor Valerie Georgeson Arthur Fowler
Pete Beale
Ian Beale
33 33 11 June 1985 Jeremy Ancock Bill Lyons Lou Beale 11.55
34 34 13 June 1985 Jeremy Ancock Jim Hawkins Ali Osman 10.60
35 35 18 June 1985 Sue Butterworth Harry Duffin Hassan Osman
Sue Osman
Ali Osman
36 36 20 June 1985 Sue Butterworth Jane Hollowood Sue Osman
Ali Osman
(No duff duff, Julia's Theme)
37 37 25 June 1985 Brian Morgan Gilly Fraser Naima Jeffery
Saeed Jeffery
38 38 27 June 1985 Brian Morgan Michael Robartes Angie Watts 10.75
39 39 2 July 1985 Matthew Robinson Jane Hollowood Angie Watts 7.75
40 40 4 July 1985 Matthew Robinson Glen McCoy Saeed Jeffery 7.75
41 41 9 July 1985 Antonia Bird Gerry Huxham Lofty Holloway 9.95
42 42 11 July 1985 Antonia Bird Bill Lyons Naima Jeffery 11.70
43 43 16 July 1985 Brian Morgan Valerie Georgeson Pete Beale 11.10
44 44 18 July 1985 Brian Morgan Liane Aukin Naima Jeffery 11.80
45 45 23 July 1985 Matthew Robinson Rosemary Mason Michelle Fowler 11.75
46 46 25 July 1985 Matthew Robinson Michael Robartes Sue Osman 12.30
47 47 30 July 1985 Antonia Bird John Crisp Pauline Fowler 12.85
48 48 1 August 1985 Antonia Bird Jane Hollowood Sue Osman
(No duff duff, Julia's Theme)
49 49 6 August 1985 Brian Morgan Valerie Georgeson Angie Watts 13.85
50 50 8 August 1985 Brian Morgan Peter Batt Den Watts 15.85
51 51 13 August 1985 Matthew Robinson Bill Lyons Pauline Fowler 14.00
52 52 15 August 1985 Matthew Robinson Bev Doyle Non character, Insurance renewal letter. 15.15
53 53 20 August 1985 Antonia Bird Michael Robartes Nick Cotton 14.10
54 54 22 August 1985 Antonia Bird Jane Hollowood Angie Watts 13.55
55 55 27 August 1985 Stephen Butcher Gilly Fraser Angie Watts 15.40
56 56 29 August 1985 Stephen Butcher Tony McHale Angie Watts 13.70
57 57 3 September 1985 Mike Gibbon Rosemary Mason Angie Watts 14.55
58 58 5 September 1985 Mike Gibbon Billy Hamon Den Watts 11.95
59 59 10 September 1985 Robert Gabriel Bill Lyons Ethel Skinner 13.25
60 60 12 September 1985 Robert Gabriel Juliet Ace Michelle Fowler
(No duff duff)
61 61 17 September 1985 Stephen Butcher Chris Anstis Michelle Fowler 13.50
62 62 19 September 1985 Stephen Butcher Bill Lyons Saeed Jeffery 15.30
63 63 24 September 1985 Mike Gibbon Jane Hollowood Michelle Fowler 13.80
64 64 26 September 1985 Mike Gibbon Valerie Georgeson Michelle Fowler 15.10
65 65 1 October 1985 Julia Smith Bill Lyons Michelle Fowler 16.10
66 66 3 October 1985 Julia Smith Tony Holland Den Watts
(No duff duff, Julia's Theme)
67 67 8 October 1985 Stephen Butcher Jane Hollowood Kathy Beale
Ian Beale
68 68 10 October 1985 Stephen Butcher Charlie Humphreys Kathy Beale 16.60
69 69 15 October 1985 Mike Gibbon Tony McHale Sheena Mennell
Mary Smith
70 70 17 October 1985 Mike Gibbon Chris Anstis Kathy Beale 16.70
71 71 22 October 1985 Robert Gabriel Peter Batt Nick Cotton 16.60
72 72 24 October 1985 Robert Gabriel Harry Duffin Simon Wicks 16.85
73 73 29 October 1985 Antonia Bird Michael Robartes Angie Watts
Den Watts
Ethel Skinner
74 74 31 October 1985 Antonia Bird Bill Lyons Debbie Wilkins 19.25
75 75 5 November 1985 William Slater Liane Aukin Kathy Beale 17.45
76 76 7 November 1985 William Slater Jane Hollowood Kathy Beale 21.15
77 77 12 November 1985 Chris Clough Gilly Fraser Pete Beale 19.80
78 78 14 November 1985 Chris Clough Tony McHale Debbie Wilkins 20.90
79 79 19 November 1985 Antonia Bird Allan Swift Kathy Beale
Pete Beale
80 80 21 November 1985 Antonia Bird Rosemary Mason Ian Beale 20.80
81 81 26 November 1985 William Slater Gerry Huxham Debbie Wilkins 20.65
82 82 28 November 1985 William Slater Susan Boyd Tony Carpenter 21.60
83 83 3 December 1985 Chris Clough Hugh Miller Debbie Wilkins 19.15
84 84 5 December 1985 Chris Clough Michael Robartes Den Watts 20.20
85 85 10 December 1985 Antonia Bird Bill Lyons Naima Jeffery 19.50
86 86 12 December 1985 Antonia Bird Jane Hollowood Saeed Jeffery 20.20
87 87 17 December 1985 William Slater David Ashton Pauline Fowler 19.35
88 88 19 December 1985 William Slater Rosemary Mason Den Watts 21.25
89 89 24 December 1985 Chris Clough Jim Hawkins Martin Fowler
Lou Beale
90 90 26 December 1985 Chris Clough Tony McHale Cassie Carpenter
Tony Carpenter
91 91 31 December 1985 Julia Smith Bill Lyons Mark Fowler


Angie, Den and Sharon Watts.


  • Reg Cox, who has been missing for three days, is found dead in his armchair when Den, Ali and Arthur break down his door.
  • Det. Sgt Rich isn't convinced the death is due to natural causes.
  • Dr Legg confirms Pauline's pregnancy, but when Lou hears the news she's furious and orders her daughter to 'get rid of it'; she won't have a baby in her house.
  • Jobless Arthur is offered a few weeks' works by builder Tony Carpenter.
  • Sue and Ali Osman at the café start up a Golden Circle money chain letter.
  • Den, when not phoning his mistress, Jan, is ducking and diving and following up one dodgy deal or another.
  • When Nick Cotton argues with Ali about Reg Cox, Den bans them both from the pub.


  • Michelle and her best friend, Sharon, compete to go out with Kelvin Carpenter.
  • Det. Sgt Rich quizzes Lofty about the Luftwaffe badge Mark gave him. It brings on one of Lofty's asthma attacks.
  • Mary and baby Annie move into Reg's room.
  • Heroin addict Nick Cotton is stopped by Ethel from persuading Mary to go on the game, so she takes up embroidery at slave wage rates instead.
  • Racist slogans are painted on the front of the food store, the handiwork of members of the New Movement that Nick wants Lofty and Mark to join. It earns Nick a walloping from Tony.


  • Naima confides to Pauline that she doesn't sleep with Saeed.
  • Pete teases Ian about his cooking. He tells his gran he's unhappy but Kathy, his mum, reacts angrily when Lou offers advice.
  • Ian also tells of the part Nick and Mark played in the attack on the food store.
  • Nick Cotton's arrest is reported.
  • Pauline packs Lou and Michelle off to Clacton.
  • Mark runs away.
  • Debs begins a Save Our Square campaign after hearing of a redevelopment threat.
  • Angie discovers that Den, in Spain, is with another woman, probably Jan. Hurt, she retaliates by seducing Tony.
  • Michelle and Lou return from Clacton, with Michelle fantasising about a waiter called Carlo.


  • Ian takes over cooking the snacks at The Vic and plans a party. With Kelvin, he teases Michelle by inviting a 'Carol' - really their pal Spotty.
  • Sharon realises what's happening between Tony and her mother.
  • Angie tells her about her dad's jaunt with Jan.
  • When Den returns, they agree to end their affairs and try again but a night in the same bed is a failure.
  • Mary's anxious father, Chris, arrives.
  • Dr Legg is busy:: Lou has shingles; Arthur is depressed at not finding any work; Sharon wants to go on the pill (to tempt Kelvin).
  • Then Pauline has a bad turn and is taken to the hospital.


  • Lou stays with Pete and Kathy for a while; they find it a strain.
  • Tony is upset to see Sharon wearing the bracelet he gave to Angie as a love token and snubs Angie the next time he sees.
  • Kelvin and Michelle split up.
  • Unhappy Sharon complains to her mother about her heavy drinking, then steals some gin and gets drunk herself.
  • Ali stakes his café and car in a poker game but wins. Before he and Sue can enjoy his luck they find their baby Hassan has died in his cot in the night. They take him to Andy, who is a nurse, but it's too late to revive him.
  • Lofty and Michelle help them out by running the café.


  • The Osman funeral takes place. Sue is numb.
  • Dot Cotton, Pauline's partner at the laundrette, turns up late, upset about the gossip circulating about her Nick, who is due in court. He gets off, with probation.
  • Michelle streaks Lofty's hair and it ends up green.
  • Couples are arguing; Saeed with Naima about her sex ban; Angie and Den because not drinking makes her nervy; and Kathy with Pete because having Lou to stay is a strain.
  • When Lou hears that Michelle has moved into her room, she insists on returning home to reclaim it. She loans Michelle money for a motorbike.
  • Ian and Kelvin go into the knitting business together.

The Beale and Fowler family.


  • Pauline has a baby boy - Martin.
  • Dr Legg thrusts Mary's little Annie into Sue's arms and Sue starts to grieve properly. She takes Hassan's clothes in a Tesco carrier bag to a none-too-delighted Pauline.
  • At Charity Night at The Vic, Angie is drinking heavily again and tries to auction her underwear. Den books her into a health farm.
  • Pete accuses Arthur of being lazy.
  • Mary tells Pauline she can't read and that she's up in court for shoplifting.
  • Michelle, peeved about her baby brother and her father's new job as a cleaner at her school, starts going out at night and drinking. She has a couple of after-hours chats with Den. One night, unseen by anyone, they make love.


  • Someone is sending poison pen letters.
  • Baby Martin has gastroenteritis and his christening is postponed.
  • Sharon, upset about her parents' quarrelling, flirts with Lofty. Den is furious and hits her.
  • Nick Cotton returns and Ethel locks herself indoors in fear.
  • Michelle confides to Lou she's pregnant and a test confirms it. She refuses to name the father. Soon everyone is discussing what to do about it.
  • Andy gives Debs two kittens to make up for the fact that after they were burgled he found he'd forgotten to renew their insurance policy.

Michelle Fowler Pregnant News Clipping (1985)


  • Michelle arranges to meet the father of her unborn child by the canal. It's Den and she tells him she won't have an abortion.
  • Simon Wicks, Pete's son from his first marriage, arrives, upsetting Kathy and Ian. He offers to move on.
  • There have been break-ins at the laundrette and Dr Legg's surgery; Kathy's medical notes are missing.
  • Saeed plans to sell up and return to Bangladesh.
  • Nick tells Kathy he knows she had a baby when she was fourteen and demands money to keep quiet.
  • Sheena Mennell, Mary's stripper friend, persuades her to take up stripping.
  • Martin is christened, with Wicksy standing in for Den as a godfather.


  • Mary begins work as a stripper.
  • Sheena babysits Annie one night but abandons her when she picks up a man. Sue rescues the child.
  • Nick blackmails Kathy again.
  • Angie tells Den that she wants to meet Jan, her rival.
  • Ian prepares for a boxing match and he wins, thanks to Pete's encouragement and Wicksy's coaching.
  • Lou keeps falling over and seems unwell.
  • Kelvin's hopes for a reconciliation between his parents are dashed when his mother, Hannah, reveals there's another man, Neville, in her life.
  • The men in the Square debate suitable punishments for Nick over his behaviour to Kathy.


  • The thief at The Vic turns out to be Sharon.
  • Angie drives Den's car to a darts match but she and it come home the worse for wear at 3:00 am.
  • Lou, home from the hospital, is grumpy about sleeping downstairs and using a commode. Pete makes things worse by telling her she's now past working on the stall.
  • Saeed is in the audience when Mary strips - he's lonely because Naima wants a divorce.
  • Debs and Andy get engaged.
  • On Boxing Day Cassie Carpenter turns up at her father's house, covered in bruises; Neville has been hitting her.
  • After Christmas, Arthur and Pauline hear that Mark is in Southend. They track him down, and find him living with a woman whose two kids call him 'Daddy'.

Who lives where

Albert Square

Walford Towers

Other places

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