Casualty newbie Kellie Shirley teases bruising EastEnders return storyline

Kellie Shirley as Casualty nurse Sophia Peters.
Kellie Shirley as Casualty nurse Sophia Peters. (Image credit: BBC Studios)

Former EastEnders favourite Kellie Shirley is the new face in Casualty, having joined the BBC medical drama as psychiatric liaison nurse Sophia Peters in a new block of episodes called Storm Damage

Nurse Sophia was first seen on screen last week in the episode Sinking Ships - Day 1 and is set to return this weekend in Sinking Ships - Day 2 where she catches the eye of consultant Dylan Keogh (played by William Beck). 

But, while Kellie is set to make herself at home in Holby ED, she has revealed that she would always be open to a return to Walford one day in the future - and she already knows what she'd like her storyline to involve. 

Kellie, who played Carly Wicks in EastEnders from 2006 to 2008, before making a brief return in 2012, told us: “Of course [I'd go back] — there’s always unfinished business in Walford! I’d love to put on Carly’s overalls for a brief spat before running off again."

Kellie as Carly Wicks on EastEnders with her on-screen mum Shirley Carter, played by Linda Henry.

Kellie as Carly Wicks on EastEnders with her on-screen mum Shirley Carter, played by Linda Henry. (Image credit: BBC)

But it isn't just a good old East End catfight that she misses about being on the soap, Kellie has also revealed that some of her closest friendships were made while working on EastEnders... "I’m good friends with Matt D’Angelo (who plays Carly’s half-brother, Dean Wicks), Linda Henry (Carly’s mum, Shirley Carter) and Emma Barton (Honey Mitchell), and Danny Dyer (who played Mick Carter) stars in a drama podcast I’ve written called ROAR. 

"I’m very grateful to EastEnders, it’s had a massive effect on my life.”

Kellie also admitted that she still gets recognised in the street for her EastEnders role, decades after she left the show... “I get stopped all the time, and it blows my kids' minds because it was before them. The last time I was on the screen with EastEnders was 2012 and people are still like ‘Carly!’ I always think, ‘How do you know it's me with all the wrinkles on my face, like how can you tell?!’”

Read our full interview with Kellie here: Casualty exclusive: Kellie Shirley on romance for Sophia

Casualty airs on Saturday evenings and EastEnders airs Monday - Thursday, both on BBC One. 

Claire Crick
Assistant Managing Editor at What To Watch

Claire is Assistant Managing Editor at What To Watch and has been a journalist for over 15 years, writing about everything from soaps and TV to beauty, entertainment, and even the Royal Family. After starting her career at a soap magazine, she ended up staying for 13 years, and over that time she’s pulled pints in the Rovers Return, sung karaoke in the Emmerdale village hall, taken a stroll around Albert Square, and visited Summer Bay Surf Club in sunny Australia. 

After learning some tricks of the trade at websites Digital Spy, Entertainment Daily, and Woman & Home, Claire landed a role at What’s On TV and writing about all things TV and film, with a particular love for Aussie soaps, Strictly Come Dancing and Bake Off

She’s interviewed everyone from June Brown — AKA Dot Cotton — to Michelle Keegan, swapped cooking tips with baking legend Mary Berry backstage at the NTAs, and danced the night away with soap stars at countless awards bashes. There’s not a lot she doesn’t know about soaps and TV and can be very handy when a soapy question comes up in a pub quiz! 

As well as all things soap-related, Claire also loves running, spa breaks, days out with her kids, and getting lost in a good book.