Cindy Beale

Cindy Beale returns as Rose Knight in EastEnders after 26 years

Some fans weren't even born when she was last on our screens!

Cindy Beale is back in EastEnders! Walford’s bitchiest, most manipulative Beale (and that’s saying something!) has returned 26 years after she ‘died’ in prison.

Oh and she just happens to be the mysterious Rose Knight – George‘s ex, and missing mum to his daughters Gina and Anna.

It’s totally bonkers, but it’s the perfect twist in Cindy’s story.

So who was Cindy and HOW did she end up behind bars?

Cindy’s back! And she’s Rose Knight! (Credit: BBC)

Who was Cindy Beale in EastEnders?

It’s been so long since Cindy was on our screens that there is a whole generation of EastEnders fans who have never seen her in Walford.

Many fans took to social media to laugh at their own excitement about Cindy’s return, despite her ‘dying’ before they were even born.

The lowdown on Cindy Beale

Fortunately, EastEnders had the young fans’ backs and shared a BRILLIANT recap of everything Cindy got up to in her time on the show.

Cindy’s highs and lows

Here’s the lowdown for those viewers who didn’t see it at the time – or can’t remember!

Cindy Williams arrived in the Square and got together with Simon Wicks. But he was a bit of a love rat and Cindy moved on to Ian Beale – who fell hard for the glamour puss.

But Cindy couldn’t resist Wicksy’s charms and a brief rekindling of their romance left her pregnant with his baby – except she let Ian think little Steven was his.

When Ian found out, he went a bit off the rails for a while and eventually Cindy, Wicksy and Steven left Walford.

Cindy looks troubled
Cindy was always trouble! (Credit: BBC)

Happy family?

They weren’t away for long! Two years later, Ian found out that Simon had abandoned Cindy. He persuaded her to come back to Albert Square so they could be a family. Cindy got pregnant again and had twins Lucy and Peter.

She wasn’t nearly as devoted to Ian as he was to her, though. She had an affair with lifeguard Matt, and then with Simon’s half-brother David Wicks.

When Ian discovered her cheating, he threatened to take the kids away from her. Feeling trapped, Cindy hired a hitman to kill her husband!

Cindy hired a hitman to kill Ian! (Credit: BBC/YouTube)

Fortunately (for Ian) she didn’t succeed. Ian survived and Cindy realised she was going to be arrested. She grabbed her sons and fled Walford, but she couldn’t get to Lucy. David promised to get her little girl from Ian and return her to Cindy – but he never did.

In 1997, Ian hired a private investigator to track Cindy down. The investigator (whose name was Ros Thorne – coincidence?!) found Cindy in Italy. Ian went to her, and told her he still loved her. Meanwhile, as she was distracted, Phil and Grant snatched Steven and Peter! Crafty!

Cindy was Lucy’s mum (Credit: BBC)

Death behind bars

But Cindy followed them back to London, along with her new fella Nick. She won custody of the kids but when she went to pick them up, she was arrested for hiring the hitman!

By that time Cindy was pregnant again, with Nick’s baby this time, but he wanted nothing to do with her. Cindy was found guilty and she was sent to prison.

When the baby was born, it was Pat Evans – Simon and David’s mum – who broke the news that Cindy had died giving birth to her daughter, Cindy Jr.

Cindy Jr was brought up by her aunt – Gina – before she came to Walford as a troublesome teenager.

Stella Price behind the bar at the Rovers
Michelle played landlady Stella Price in Coronation Street (Credit: ITV/Shutterstock)

Who played Cindy Beale in EastEnders?

Cindy was played by national treasure Michelle Collins.

Her role as Cindy made her a huge star and she went on to star in Sunburn – a drama about holiday reps – and Two Thousand Acres Of Sky – about a single mum who went to live in a small Scottish village – among many other shows.

And in 2011, she joined Coronation Street as landlady Stella Price – Leanne Battersby’s biological mum.

Now Michelle’s back as Cindy and we actually can’t wait to find out EXACTLY how she ended up beside that pool, sipping cold white wine and ignoring George Knight’s calls!

YouTube video player

EastEnders usually airs Monday to Thursday at 7.30pm on BBC One

Are you excited to see Cindy back in Walford? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix and let us know what you think!

For all the latest soap spoilers, news and chat come and join us at Soap Daily now! 

Kerry Barrett
Freelance Soap Writer