Jacqueline Jossa returns to EastEnders as Lauren Branning

Jacqueline Jossa is to make a permanent return to EastEnders as Lauren Branning.

Lauren bid farewell to Albert Square in 2018, following the tragic loss of her sister Abi in a rooftop accident at The Vic.

Since then, she has resided in New Zealand, raising her son Louie Beale. While Lauren briefly returned for Dot Branning’s funeral in December, tensions quickly flared with Linda Carter over her affair with Max.

Lauren Branning (JACQUELINE JOSSA)
Lauren Branning (JACQUELINE JOSSA)’s appearance in December. Credit: BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron

Jacqueline’s last on-screen appearance was in June, when her character headed to France to reunite with Peter and their son, Louie. However, her visit quickly turned tumultuous as Lauren uncovered a significant secret: Peter’s mother, Cindy, was still alive. Though the Beales have since come back to Walford, the exact reason for Lauren’s return to the Square remains shrouded in mystery.

Now, with Cindy’s unexpected return, unresolved issues with Peter, and a sister living in The Vic of whom she’s unaware, Lauren’s homecoming is bound to ignite turmoil among Walford’s residents as she finds herself thrust into the center of drama once more.

Jacqueline Jossa said of making her return: “I’m really excited! It’s such an amazing time to be back as there is so much buzz around EastEnders at the moment, and I’ve been watching and loving it like a fan. Walford holds such a special place in my heart, so it really does feel like coming home.”

EastEnders’ executive producer Chris Clenshaw commented: “I’m delighted to welcome Jaqueline back to the role of Lauren Branning. Although we only saw Lauren on-screen a few months ago, her return left plenty of unfinished business between her and the Beales.

“The Branning family have a long history of being at the heart of the drama in Walford, and we’re absolutely thrilled to have Jacqueline back in the Square as she continues that family tradition.”

A date for Lauren’s on screen return is to be confirmed.

EastEnders airs on BBC One and iPlayer.