Having watched Eastenders from day one (with gaps in the middle when small children took over the 7.30pm viewing slot) I could probably score quite highly if 'the lives and loves of Eastenders characters', were my specialty subject on Mastermind. Nowadays, it is something teen daughter and I watch together, with cups of tea and Walnut Whips.
Peggy Mitchell has long been one of my favourite characters, with her fierce love of her wayward family, loyalty to the Queen Vic and its customers, and her often traumatic love life. Peggy was a strong woman who endured breast cancer, a couple of evil husbands, children with drug problems and spells in prison, and most disturbingly her daughter leaving home and coming back as a different person (which bizarrely she didn't seem to notice!!).
There are many strong, older female characters in Eastenders. As well as having a fabulous (often very camp) style of their own, Pat, Dot and Peggy provided a shoulder to cry on, stability for the younger members of the community and good old fashion East end common sense. As Peggy said last night "I'm old East End, real East End'. There was something kind of comforting about that.
Last night saw Peggy leave Albert Square for ever, played out to her very own version of the Eastenders theme tune. Corny as it was, we shed a little tear, as we will miss Peggy Mitchell, not least, because we loved to hear her shout ' Get outta my pub'.