33 EastEnders pictures for next week reveal two major returns and huge tragedy for Whitney as 2024 starts with a bang

EastEnders spoilers follow for the beginning of the New Year, with two shock returns and two new arrivals taking Walford by storm.

The events of Christmas continue to send shockwaves through the Square, particularly where The Six are concerned but next week shifts primary focus away from them to take our attention elsewhere.

In fact, the show takes us all the way to Paris, where we find Lauren and Penny Branning (Jacqueline Jossa and Kitty Castledine).

Things soon take a shock turn for the duo and shortly afterwards they make a huge decision, opting to return to Walford.

Penny arrives back in London and makes her way to the Square, but there’s trouble for Lauren, who doesn’t appear to be with her cousin.

The question is: just where is she? And what has transpired?

That remain to be seen.

Elsewhere in the Square, George Knight (Colin Salmon) is confronted by Cindy Beale (Michelle Collins), who asks him if he’s happy with his life choices, much to Elaine Peacock’s (Harriet Thorpe) dismay.

Before he can answer, however, the patriarch receives two unexpected visitors in the form of his parents, Gloria and Eddie.

George’s reaction isn’t what one might’ve expected which leaves Elaine concerned. But it’s not Elaine that he confides in as he later tells Cindy that he was adopted.

EastEnders Week 1 gallery
EastEnders kicks off its New Year in quite a big way – with two returns, two newcomers and sad news (Picture: BBC)

The biggest shock, however, comes later in the week when a big truth courtesy of Gloria rocks the pub landlord’s entire world.

But just what has she said? And why has it rocked George so much?

EastEnders airs these scenes between Monday, January 1 and Thursday, December 4 at 7:30pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

In Paris, Lauren celebrates New Year's Eve (Picture: BBC)
Lauren speaks to someone at a party (Picture: BBC)
But she's not alone (Picture: BBC)
Her cousin Penny is also present (Picture: BBC)
Penny speaks to Lauren (Picture: BBC)
The evening doesn't exactly go as planned (Picture: BBC)
Things become tense (Picture: BBC)
Lauren makes a decision as she and Penny resolve to return to Walford (Picture: BBC)
George receives a visit from his parents Eddie and Gloria (Picture: BBC)
Whitney is left heartbroken by some news (Picture: BBC)
She and Zack have learned that Ashton will be moving to another foster home (Picture: BBC)
They share the upsetting news with Ashton (Picture: BBC)
Devastated by recent events, Zack heads to Peggy's (Picture: BBC)
Sam listens as he opens up (Picture: BBC)
The New Year isn't particularly a happy event for Zack (Picture: BBC)
There is tension between Whitney and Zack (Picture: BBC)
Can they open up about how they're really feeling? (Picture: BBC)
Cindy discusses George with Ian (Picture: BBC)
Yolande has a plan to teach the teens a lesson (Picture: BBC)
George reels in the wake of a revelation from Gloria (Picture: BBC)
Needing support, he turns to Cindy (Picture: BBC)
Whitney shows Sonia a picture of Ashton, who has settled in to his new foster family (Picture: BBC)
Reiss' presence, however, appears to change the topic of conversation (Picture: BBC)
Cindy continues to help George (Picture: BBC)
Anna spends some time with Gloria (Picture: BBC)
Cindy is feeling grateful to have her girls around her (Picture: BBC)
Gina also drops by the Beale household (Picture: BBC)
The two share a special moment (Picture: BBC)
Whitney visits Peach's tree (Picture: BBC)
Yolandes offers her support, with the two having a heart-to-heart (Picture: BBC)
Whitney subsequently makes a big decision (Picture: BBC)
Denzel misinterprets a moment between Yolande and Pastor Clayton (Picture: BBC)
Will Denzel tell Yolande what he's worried about? (Picture: BBC)
Source: https://edition.cnn.com/

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