Jac Jossa says June Brown ‘deserved a good send off’ ahead of Dot’s funeral

Former EastEnders favourite Jacqueline Jossa has admitted she hoped she'd be invited back to the show when the time came to commemorate the life of her on-screen step-grandmother Dot Cotton, following the death of actress June Brown this year.

When asked if she was pleased to return to Walford, mother-of-two Jac, 30, said: "I’d hoped it would happen. June deserves the send-off she’s going to get at EastEnders, and I wanted to be a part of that and be involved.

"It was nice to be there to represent that side of the Branning family because there are family members always off gallivanting and doing different things."

Talking about her late co-star, who died at the age of 95 in April, Jacqueline added: "No one can say a bad word about her, and we really felt that when we were filming".

Asked her favourite memory with her on-screen pal June, she laughed: "None that I can share because she was so cheeky!

"Those who know her know what she was really like. June was always so kind. Everyone always listened to June – the choices she made were always right, and she was brilliant."

Jacqueline added: "Before I was in EastEnders, I was a huge fan of the show. When I think of East London, I think of Dot Cotton! Her cigarettes, her wig, her scarf. She’s like everyone’s grandma."

The star, who played Lauren Branning in the soap for seven years before leaving in 2017, also described being back in Albert Square as "bittersweet".


"I was really nervous because, no matter what, it’s always such a big thing to be at EastEnders," she admitted. "But when I got there, it didn’t feel like anything had changed. It just felt like being back at home.

"The two episodes are very emotional from top to bottom because there are so many layers."

She continued: "It was a send-off for June as much as it was for Dot. It was bittersweet as we all shared stories, and there was so much laughter."

The soap is set for heart-breaking scenes in upcoming weeks as Sonia Fowler [played by Natalie Cassidy] receives a devastating phone call revealing that Dot has died.

The BBC One show will be airing an emotional funeral for Dot with Jac amongst the six characters returning.

Alongside Lauren, another five characters are returning to say their goodbyes to the much-loved Dot.

The other returnees are George "Lofty" Holloway (played by Tom Watt), Colin Russell (Lord Michael Cashman CBE), Barry Clark (Gary Hailes), Mary "the punk" Smith (Linda Davidson) and Disa O’Brien (Jan Graveson).

EastEnders, Wednesday and Thursday, BBC One

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