There is a new character heading for Albert Square...
Next week’s EastEnders will see a new character arrives our screens, set to help Ben through his ordeal of losing his hearing.
EastEnders fans will know that Ben has always been partially deaf, but his condition was made a lot worse during the fateful night of the Thames boat crash back in February.
With him now barely being able to hear anything and relying fully on lip reading, Ben has been struggling to get used to his new normal.
But thankfully doctors think they can help with Ben’s loss of hearing and he is currently in hospital awaiting his operation.
However, it is bad news for Ben next week when he takes a turn for the worst, and everyone starts to worry about his health.
Viewers saw Ben heading to the hospital in Tuesday’s episode, however he was already under the weather and running a temperature.
But, determined not to miss his operation day, Ben is adamant that he is fine – until next week Callum and Kathy both realise he is hiding how ill he actually is.
Ben is left fuming when the doctor refuses to go ahead with his operation because of his bug, but he is later distracted when he and Callum see a girl called Frankie arguing with a doctor.
Later in the week Frankie makes another appearance when she is caught shoplifting by Callum, and it is only when he confronts her that he realises she is deaf.
As Callum steps in to help, he then asks her to come and talk to Ben, hoping that she might be able to give him some advice.
Of course, Ben isn’t impressed with the idea. But could Frankie be the one to finally get through to him?
As we reported earlier in the year, EastEnders has worked closely with the National Deaf Children’s Society as well as experts in the field to ensure that the storyline is portrayed as accurately as possible.
Speaking of her new role on the soap, actress Rose Ayling-Ellis, who will be playing newcomer, Frankie, said: “I am so excited to be joining the cast of EastEnders and I am equally proud to be one of the first deaf actresses to be part of this iconic soap. I can’t wait for everyone to meet Frankie!”
Executive Producer Jon Sen added: “It has been a long time ambition of EastEnders to reflect the experience of the deaf community and Ben’s new story was the perfect opportunity to do that. We are thrilled to be working with Rose.”
EastEnders will temporarily air a reduced schedule of two episodes a week. Watch on Mondays at 8pm and Tuesdays at 7:30pm on BBC One.