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'EastEnders' Lou Beale actress Anna Wing dies, aged 98

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EastEnders star Anna Wing has died at the age of 98.

The actress, who played Lou Beale on the BBC soap, passed away on Sunday (July 7), her agent confirmed.

Anna Wing

© Rex Features / Today

Anna Wing



Wing was one of EastEnders' original cast members, appearing in 232 episodes from the show's launch in 1985 until her final appearance in July 1988.

Her matriarchal alter ego was a formidable presence in Walford, keeping the Beale and Fowler families in check.

Lou's exit storyline saw her pass away peacefully following a period of ill health, but not before giving her family some final home truths.

An EastEnders spokesperson commented: "We are deeply saddened to hear that Anna Wing has passed away. From the very first episode of EastEnders, Anna created one of the most iconic matriarchs in television history.

"The character of Lou Beale is still so entrenched in EastEnders history and without Anna, the Beale family would never have been the focal point that it is today. Anna will be remembered fondly by everyone at EastEnders and our deepest sympathies are extended to her family and friends."

Anna Wing with her OBE for services to drama and to charity

© Rex Features / Nils Jorgensen

Anna Wing with her OBE for services to drama



Wing was born in October 1914 and trained at the Croydon School of Acting in South London. She had previously worked as an artist's model and at East End hospitals.

While Lou was her most famous role, Wing's earlier TV credits included parts in Market in Honey Lane, Doctor Who and Z-Cars.

In the years after leaving EastEnders, Wing appeared in The Bill, Casualty and Doctors.

In 2009, Wing received an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours for her services to drama and charity.

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