EastEnders fans beg BBC to air old episodes of the soap after they axe Thursday and Friday episodes due to coronavirus


EASTENDERS fans reckon they’ve hit upon a genius idea as the show goes down to two airings a week – calling on the BBC to show vintage episodes instead.

The soap revealed today it would be airing only on Mondays and Tuesday after calling a halt to filming during the coronavirus pandemic.

⚠ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

EastEnders fans are calling for vintage episodes to air on Thursdays and Fridays

But many want to see old episodes featuring the likes of Archie and Peggy Mitchell, Pat and Frank Butcher – and scheming Janine.

One fan asked the BBC: “Could you guys show older, memorable Eastenders episodes from years gone by in the eastenders time slots for thursdays and fridays? i think it may help lift spirits.”

The response was huge, with fans delighted at the prospect of seeing old favourites back on primetime telly.

One raved: “We need an archie mitchell week!”

Fans want to see Janine Butcher and Archie Mitchell back on our screens

There are calls for old episodes, involving Grant and Phil, to come back

Alice Branning whacking Michael Moon back in 2013

Another agreed: “I’d happily re-watch old storylines – like half an hour episodes with all the scenes from the Ronnie’s baby swap storyline, for example.”

EastEnders today revealed half the weekly trips to Albert Square have been axed during the coronavirus outbreak because staff have been sent home.

A statement from the soap reads: “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.

Current EastEnders plots will move more slowly under a new schedule

Mick and Linda will be making two fewer appearances from now on

“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.”

EastEnders will now air on Mondays at 8pm and Tuesdays at 7.30pm with immediate effect.

Production on the show will continue, with writers penning future storylines despite the temporary halt to filming.

ITV also announced that Coronation Street and Emmerdale would air less frequently – but that they would keep filming new episodes.

The coronavirus death toll has risen to 72, it was revealed today

The change will allow the soaps to stay on air until July – even if production has to be shut down.

A statement released today read: “The continued transmission of both soaps is a priority to all of us at ITV and to our audiences who enjoy the shows.

“Whilst carefully adhering to the latest health advice from the Government and Public Health England, our production teams are continuing to film episodes in Manchester and Leeds.

“With this change of transmission pattern it will ensure we have great new soap episodes coming to air every weekday night until at least the early summer.”