Babs: I left because they 'killed off' Larry Lamb

Babs: I left because they 'killed off' Larry Lamb
Babs: I left because they 'killed off' Larry Lamb (Image credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima)

Barbara Windsor has told how she left EastEnders last year because she felt overworked and the writers killed off her co-star Larry Lamb. The actress, 73, played Peggy opposite Larry as screen husband Archie Mitchell, who was murdered in the Queen Vic. Barbara told The Vanessa Show on Five: "He's a real nosh. I was devastated when they made him into a murderer. I thought we'd be there for ever actually... We got on so well." She admitted: "I'd been a great fan of his. I was terribly nervous when he came in... I put my highest heels on because he's so tall. "I never thought I'd leave EastEnders, but a few things happened." The star said she used to be able to 'switch off' from the soap when she came through her front door. But she revealed that one day, her husband Scott Mitchell complained that everything they talked about always went back to EastEnders. Babs said: "I thought that was a warning sign. When we started doing Saturdays... I thought 'this is too much, I'll go'. The actress, who still misses the on-set camaraderie, said she finally decided to bow out when scriptwriters decided to 'kill Larry off'.

Patrick McLennan

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 

An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.