Bernie Taylor will be back next year, according to EASTENDERS bosses.
The pregnant surrogate, played by actress Clair Norris in the BBC serial, will return to the square after fleeing earlier this year after becoming pregnant with Stuart and Rainie’s child.
She opted to go stay with her brother Keanu since she was convinced Rainie was back on drugs.
From January, the BBC soap will return to full-length 30-minute episodes on all nights except Tuesday.
Chelsea’s terrible Christmas is far from finished in Walford, with baby Jordan in hospital and her new husband’s watchful eye more evident than ever.
Gray ups the ante with his deception, taking advantage of Chelsea’s frail state, but Whitney and Kheerat stay committed to exposing him.
Phil’s hasty judgment results in an odd pairing. Kat and Sharon are compelled to work together to attempt to put things right, but will they be able to find him before the cops do?
Phil has no idea that he’s about to face his toughest test yet, and that he’ll be forced to make a decision that would put everything he believes as a Mitchell to the test.
In other news, Zack is determined to make amends with Sharon, while Stacey is working on a new business endeavor and has her sights set on another prize.
She’s hoping to win the jackpot in her love life as well, but Jean has other demands on her time.
Mick has some adjusting to do at The Vic as he adjusts to the new setup, but things are never simple when Janine is nearby.
Janine is completely prepared to play the long game now that she has fallen for Mick.
However, the Carters are missing more than Linda; Shirley and Mick still want to know where Tina is.
Elsewhere, the Monroe family faces a make-or-break situation, with major decisions to be made that will have long-term consequences for Walford’s newest family.
Callum and Ben will also confront fresh challenges, as Ben discovers that his prior tragedy is never far away.
When Callum notices Ben is struggling, he enlists additional assistance, but he already has a lot on his plate with Stuart – will he be able to do enough?
Stuart’s battle to accept his breast cancer diagnosis is still ongoing, with him unwilling to tell anyone the truth.
Even when it comes to treatment, he’s determined to bury his head in the sand.
He’ll also be stressed as Bernie’s due date approaches, and he and Rainie wait for the pregnant adolescent’s return.
Dotty discovers she has no one else to turn to after her scheming, so she seeks Vinny’s help and forms an unexpected alliance.
Things aren’t going so well at the Panesar’s either; Kheerat is so consumed with assisting Chelsea that he may be missing out on an opportunity for romance elsewhere, and Suki is forced to confront her concerns when she’s confronted by Honey.
She takes things with Ash a step too far with her guard up.