THIS former Hollyoaks star is heading to EastEnders for MAJOR new role

EastEnders Albert Square sign

Soap fans will be seeing a familiar face arriving in Albert Square next month as a former Hollyoaks actress joins EastEnders. But what do we know about the new arrival?

Former Hollyoaks actress Rukku Nahar has joined the EastEnders cast as part of the Ahmed family.

The soap announced today that the Ahmeds will be welcoming two new characters to their clan, sisters Iqra and Habiba.

The pair will be playing Mariam and Arshad's granddaughters and will be arriving early next year.

Iqra and Habiba join EastEnders

Iqra and Habiba are set to bring drama to the Square

Rukku will play Habiba, the younger of the siblings, and EastEnders has promised that she will be full of the best intentions but trouble never seems to be too far behind her.

Luckily for Habiba, her older sister is always there to pick up the pieces and clear up her mess.

Soap fans will remember Rukku from Hollyoaks where she played Hunter McQueen's girlfriend. Hunter and Asha recently left Hollyoaks to start a new life in Brighton, and it seems being in Hollyoaks has given the actress a taste of what's to come on EastEnders...

"I’m so excited to have joined EastEnders, it’s a show I’ve grown up watching and stepping onto Albert Square is just unreal," says Rukku.

EastEnders - Masood Mariam Arshad

Iqra and Habiba will join the show as Mariam and Arshad's granddaughters

"Habiba is great fun to play and I’m so happy to be working alongside Priya. Can’t wait for you all to see what we get up to on the Square."

The sisters are set to be defiant, smart and confident, who apparently stop at nothing to get what they want.

Iqra, the eldest of the siblings, is no-nonsense, bold and intelligent and it has been revealed that she will arrive in Albert Square and work out very quickly that life in Walford is never simple, especially where her sister is involved.

Hollyoaks, Hunter McQueen, Asha Kaur

Soap fans will remember Rukku from Hollyoaks where she played Hunter McQueen's girlfriend

For actress Priya Davdra, who will be playing Iqra, this is her first television role, and she couldn't be more excited about her debut on the small screen...

"EastEnders was such a big part of my life growing up and I couldn’t be more excited to be joining the show. Walking on to the set for the first time was such an amazing experience.

"I can’t wait for viewers to meet the sisters and see how much drama they’re going to cause."

Speaking of the new arrivals EastEnders' Senior Executive Producer Kate Oates said: "The sisters are certainly going to be a force to be reckoned with.

"Their arrival will throw number 41 into chaos as they become a nightmare for Mariam and Arshad. Residents of Walford beware, take on one of the sisters and you take on the pair."

EastEnders airs Monday and Friday at 8pm and Tuesday and Thursday at 7.30pm on BBC One.

Picture credits: Hollyoaks image: Lime Pictures, all others BBC

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.