Who was Aunt Sal in EastEnders after death of TV icon Anna Karen?

Aunt Sal eating dinner in EastEnders
Aunt Sal last appeared on the show in 2017 (Picture: BBC)

Recent EastEnders scenes saw Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) receive a phone call from relatives explaining that Aunt Sal (Anna Karen) had sadly passed away.

Since receiving the news, Sam Mitchell (Kim Medcalf) has taken control of organising the funeral, which is set to air tonight (January 15).

Aunt Sal made numerous appearances in the BBC soap over a 20 year period, and is one of EastEnders’ most memorable guest characters.

Who was Aunt Sal?

Aunt Sal was played by television legend Anna Karen, who had previously starred as Olive in On the Buses and The Rag Trade.

She was the sharp-tongued sister of Peggy Mitchell, who made her first appearance in 1996, arriving just as Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth) gave birth to son Ben Mitchell (now played by Max Bowden).

Over the years, she appeared in 54 episodes, making her last appearance at Ronnie and Roxy Mitchell’s funeral in 2017.

She often appeared for important family events, such as weddings and funerals, and was also present for Peggy Mitchell’s final episodes.

When did Anna Karen die?

Anna Karen wearing a grey suit with her hands clasped in front of her
Anna Karen appeared in 54 episodes of EastEnders (Picture: REX/Shutterstock)

Anna sadly passed away in a house fire in 2022, at the age of 85.

Speaking at the time of her death, an EastEnders spokesperson said:

‘We are deeply saddened to hear that Anna Karen has passed away.

‘Anna created a sharp, quick witted and extremely popular character in Aunt Sal that the audience will never forget, just as those who worked with her at EastEnders will never forget her warmth, kindness fun and good humour.

‘Our love and thoughts are with Anna’s family and friends.’

Source: https://edition.cnn.com/

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