Dame Barbara left the soap for good in 2016
Dame Barbara Windsor is to be honoured by EastEnders bosses after they decided to name the soap’s newest arrival after her character.
Barbara played Queen Victoria landlady Peggy Mitchell until she left the soap for good in 2016 when her character tragically passed away following a cancer diagnosis.
Now her granddaughter Louise — played by Tilly Keeper — is pregnant with boyfriend Keanu Taylor’s baby, and EastEnders bosses have decided to name the newborn Peggy.
On hearing the news, Barbara’s husband Scott Mitchell said that her face “lit up” at the touching tribute.
“She thought what a lovely thing it is Peggy Mitchell will live on in a family member. What a lovely tribute,” he told The Sun.
“It made her quite emotional and I have been reminding her each time we watch the show every night.
“Each time her whole face lights up.”
Barbara decided to leave EastEnders following her Alzheimer’s diagnosis.
Last year, Scott broke the news to the public after the star kept her illness secret following her diagnosis in 2014.
He told The Sun: “Firstly, I hope speaking out will help other families dealing with loved ones who have this cruel disease. Secondly, I want the public to know because they are naturally very drawn to Barbara and she loves talking to them.
“So rather than me living in fear she might get confused or upset, they’ll know that if her behaviour seems strange, it’s due to Alzheimer’s and accept it for what it is.”
He added: “When the doctor told us, she began crying then held it back, stretched her hand out to me and mouthed, ‘I’m so sorry . . .’
“I squeezed her hand back and said, ‘Don’t worry, we’ll be OK’.
“I can’t protect her any longer. I’m doing this interview — and I would like to make clear that I’m not being paid for it and it’s the only one I’ll be doing — because I know that rumours are circulating in showbusiness circles.
“And, since her 80th birthday last August, a definite continual confusion has set in, so it’s becoming a lot more difficult for us to hide.”