Lily Slater has fallen pregnant with Ricky Jr’s child and the school children are trying to navigate a future together raising their baby.
EastEnders fans will see the return of Lily Slater’s (played by Lillia Turner) father Ryan Malloy (Neil McDermott) in upcoming scenes. As Stacey Slater (Lacey Turner) deals with the fallout of her daughter’s pregnancy bombshell, Lily’s biological dad returns for a short stint in February.
It’s been almost seven years since Ryan was in Walford but the concerned father will waste no time in causing a stir.
He first arrived in 2009 as Whitney Dean’s (Shona McGarty) half-brother.
During his two years in Albert Square, Ryan married and divorced Janine Butcher (Charlie Brooks) in spectacular fashion.
The recently departed soap villain was devastated when it was revealed Ryan was the father of Stacey’s daughter.
Ryan also served a short sentence behind bars for accidentally killing Rob Grayson (Jody Latham).
The incident occurred as protective brother tried to keep Whitney safe.
Although he hasn’t been seen on screen for some time, there have been several mentions of Ryan over the years.
Whitney often refers to her brother and at Christmas she made a point of telling Stacey that Ryan had sent her money for Lily’s present.
In recent scenes, Whitney became embroiled in her niece’s scandal.
Stacey told Whitney the truth before adding that she would also be letting Ryan know once things had settled down.
EastEnders spoilers confirm Ryan’s episodes will air next month and his character now lives in Wakefield with his prison officer wife Helen.
Ryan was last seen in Walford in November 2016 when he made a brief return to the square for Whitney’s wedding to Lee Carter (Danny Hatchard).
On returning to EastEnders, Neil McDermott said: “When I heard what the story was I was really pleased that the stars aligned and I was able to revisit Ryan and set foot back on the Square.
“It was so lovely to see so many old friends and to work with Shona and Lacey again, as well as to meet and work with Ryan’s daughter, played beautifully by Lillia.”
Chris Clenshaw, Executive producer, added: “It’s wonderful to welcome Neil back to the role of Ryan Malloy.
“Although we haven’t seen Ryan for some years, his character is still intertwined in the history of two of the show’s major characters, Stacey and Whitney.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to have him back for a short while as he’s thrust into the heart of the drama.”
Meanwhile, Whitney is facing a crisis of her own after receiving devastating news about her unborn baby.
Whitney and Zack Hudson (James Farrar) will be at the centre of a heartbreaking storyline with their baby being diagnosed with Edwards’ Syndrome.
The condition affects how long a baby may survive and sadly most babies with Edwards’ Syndrome will die before or shortly after being born.
The parents-to-be will subsequently be left to consider some tough decisions.
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