EASTENDERS’ fans will get their first look at Mick Carter and his wife Linda selling up their beloved The Queen Vic pub in a move they hope will help her with her alcoholism.
In the episode to air on April 6, the couple invite an estate agent in to value the iconic pub.
HOAR Online revealed actor Danny Dyer, 42, who has played Mick since 2013 was stepping down from the BBC1 soap.
But due to Mick’s wife and fellow landlord Linda’s battle with alcoholism, Mick is selling up, meaning some of Walford’s biggest names – including warring ex-couple Phil and Sharon Mitchell – will be competing to takeover while the Carters move elsewhere in Albert Square.
A soap insider said: “With Linda struggling to quit booze it makes sense Mick moves the family out the pub.
“His decision will spark a bidding war between some of the residents who fancy taking on the biggest job in Walford.”
The insider added: “Viewers will be sad to see Danny no longer behind the bar, but that doesn’t mean he won’t return at some point in the future.”
Linda, played by Kellie Bright, hit the booze to cope with the stress of being ostracised by parents at the school attended by youngest son Olly, who has been diagnosed with autism.
The Queen Vic landlord is considered one of the most sought-after parts in EastEnders.
Former landlords have included Peggy Mitchell (Barbara Windsor), Alfie and Kat Moon (Shane Richie and Jessie Wallace), Frank and Pat Butcher (Mike Reid and Pam St Clement) and Den and Angie Watts (Leslie Grantham and Anita Dobson).
Fans will have to wait until next week to watch the major episode after the BBC decided to halt production on the soap due to coronavirus.
As a result the soap is having its number of episodes drastically cut, from its usual four per week to two so that it doesn’t run out of episodes before it can go back into production..
Those days will be Monday and Tuesday at 7:30pm.
A BBC spokesperson said in a statement: “In light of the spread of Covid-19, after much consideration, it has been decided that filming on EastEnders will be postponed until further notice. The decision was made after the latest government update.
“We will continue to follow the latest news and advice from the World Health Organisation and Public Health England.
“We have also taken the decision to reduce the amount of episodes we broadcast each week to two, so that we can ensure the audience can continue to enjoy EastEnders in their homes for as long as possible.”
The decision came as PM Boris Johnson ordered all of Britain into lockdown to prevent the spread of the deadly virus.
He said “drastic action” such as staying indoors, only shopping for essentials and going outside to exercise only once a day was needed to slow the spread of coronavirus.