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EastEnders star Adam Woodyatt shares classic 1984 snap to celebrate 36 years on the soap (and he couldn't make his first audtion!)

EastEnders Secrets Ian Beale and Kathy Beale
(Image credit: BBC/Kieron McCarron)

Adam couldn't make his first audition for EastEnders

EastEnders star Adam Woodyatt has shared a classic snap from 1984 to celebrate his 36 years on the soap.

The black and white picture - shows how long ago it was taken! - shows members of the original cast, including Adam, dancing in Albert Square.

Adam, who plays Ian Beale on the soap, wrote on Instagram: "29th October 1984 was the start of my first contract with @bbceastenders. 36 years later, three of us are still standing and messing around outside the Queen Vic."

Eagle-eyed EastEnders fans will recognise a lot of famous faces in the picture. There's Bill Treacher, who played Arthur Fowler, Anna Wing, aka Lou Beale and Tom Watt (Lofty) to name a few.

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The second snap Adam shared shows a picture of him, Gillian Taylforth (who plays his screen mum Kathy Beale) and Letitia Dean (Sharon Watts) enjoying a dance in Albert Square.

MORE: Holby City legend Hugh Quarshie is leaving the show after 19 years (opens in new tab)

Of course the date of the first picture, 29th October 1984, is before EastEnders was on air. Who could have predicted when that photo was taken what a massive soap it would become?!

The first episode of EastEnders didn't actually air until 19th February 1985. Adam is the only original cast member to have been on the show continually since.

Adam Woodyatt missed his first audtion for EastEnders!

Adam once recalled how he couldn't make his first audition!

"I first got asked to audition in the May of 1984 and I couldn’t make it! They wanted me in London for 9.30am the next day, but I was living in Wales, working in a butcher’s shop, and had already missed the last train to London.

"The first train the following morning wouldn’t get me there in time. Then another phone call came in July. I had more notice, I could make it."

And he admitted he couldn't remember his first scene.

“I can’t remember if it was the one where I was walking round the corner with Tish [Letitia Dean, who plays Sharon] going to stall or if it was the one where I was walking across the road to the cafe. It was definitely in the market, though, as I wasn’t in the studio for a week.”

EastEnders continues on BBC1.

David is the What To Watch Editor and has over 20 years of experience in television journalism. He is currently writing about the latest television and film news for What To Watch.


Before working for What To Watch, David spent many years on TV Times magazine, interviewing some of television's most famous stars including Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland, singer Lionel Richie and wildlife legend Sir David Attenborough. 


David started out as a writer on TV Times before becoming the title's deputy features editor and then features editor. During his time on TV Times, David also helped run the annual TV Times Awards. David is a huge Death in Paradise fan, although he's still failed to solve a case before the show's detective! He also loves James Bond and controversially thinks that Timothy Dalton was an excellent 007.


Other than watching and writing about telly, David loves playing cricket, going to the cinema, trying to improve his tennis and chasing about after his kids!