Which EastEnders characters know Cindy Beale as she returns to the soap?

Cindy Beale (Michelle Collins) has made her long-awaited return to EastEnders, and it has been everything we hoped for and more.

Having first appeared on the show in 1988, Cindy’s history with Albert Square is deep-rooted, and her actions during that time have become somewhat infamous.

While many residents are set to meet Cindy for the very first time, a handful of characters are well acquainted with the iconic villain – or her reputation, at the very least.

But as Cindy finally reveals herself to the Walford residents tonight (August 29), who will recognise her?

Which EastEnders characters know Cindy Beale?

Ian and Peter Beale

We learnt recently that Cindy had reconnected with former husband Ian Beale (Adam Woodyatt) just over a year ago, before reuniting with son Peter (Thomas Law) six months later.

Ian and Cindy had a tumultuous relationship, which included several extra-marital affairs and that small incident where she had him shot. You know, normal soap couple stuff.

Having recovered from the attempted murder, Ian entered a vicious custody battle against Cindy over her three children, Peter, Lucy and Steven.

Judges ultimately ruled in Cindy’s favour and granted her full custody of the children, leaving Ian devastated.

However, new information soon came to light which put Cindy in the frame for his attempted murder, leading to her arrest and exit from the show.

Despite all of this, Cindy and Ian are now back together, with Ian determined to do whatever he can to prevent her from straying.

Kathy Beale

We knew that Cindy’s reunion with Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth) would involve fireworks, and we were not disappointed.

Kathy has never been particularly fond of Cindy, having disapproved of Ian’s choice to stay with her after learning that Steven wasn’t his son.

The pair have had several explosive fights over the years, with Cindy never being able to win round her mother-in-law.

However, it seems that they may have found some common ground in recent scenes, as they both expressed their guilt at not being around when Lucy was killed.

Could they finally be set to bury the hatchet?

The Knights

While most of us know Cindy Beale as Cindy Beale, for the Knight family, it is a different story.

George Knight (Colin Salmon) married Cindy during her witness protection, believing her name to be Rose.

Together they had two daughters, Anna and Gina (Molly Rainford and Francesca Henry), and they lived happily ever after.

Until 2014, that is.

Since the Knights arrived in Albert Square, they have made no secret about the fact that Rose walked out on them nine years ago, for seemingly no reason.

However, as they come face to face for the first time in almost a decade in tonight’s episode, those reasons will become clear.

Phil Mitchell

Phil Mitchell’s (Steve McFadden) failed marriage to Kathy Beale meant that he became far more involved in Cindy’s life than he probably would have liked in the late 1990s.

When Cindy disappeared with her sons Peter and Steven, Ian was desperate to track her down and get them back.

In 1997, he realised that she was in Italy, and formulated a plan to get his boys back.

This involved the help of Phil, who was still trying to find ways to win back Kathy, and his brother, Grant.

Together, Phil and Grant managed to snatch Peter and Steven and get them to the airport before Cindy could catch them.

This event will surely play in both Cindy and Phil’s minds when they see each other and may lead to some awkward interactions.

Sharon Watts

If there’s one thing we know about Cindy, it’s that she loves a scrap, and Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean) is just one of many people she has fought with. 10 points if you guessed that it was over a man.

While Sharon was dating Simon Wicks back in 1988, he slept with Cindy, after which she fell pregnant with Steven.

Simon began to find his relationship with Sharon stifling and began an affair with Cindy, which would ultimately lead to them running away together for a couple of years.

Of course, after finding out about their affair, Sharon was quick to confront Cindy, making her feelings for her very clear.

We can’t imagine they’re going to be the best of friends this time around either…

Sonia and Martin Fowler

Sonia and Martin Fowler (Natalie Cassidy and James Bye) were only children when their paths crossed with Cindy’s, so how much they remember of her remains to be seen.

With Martin having been born in Albert Square in 1985, and Sonia having arrived in 1993, they will certainly have heard all about Cindy’s scheming and murderous activities, and will definitely be aware of her supposed death.

Sam Mitchell

Though she is not currently living in the Square, Sam Mitchell (Kim Medcalf) is set to return in the future, and she will surely be shocked by Cindy’s return.

Cindy clearly had a penchant for the not-so-single Wicks brothers, having also cheated on Ian with half-brother David Wicks, who was in the midst of a fling with Sam.

Though Sam was eager for their fling to continue, David ditched her for Cindy, leading Sam to try and reconnect with Ricky Butcher.

Ben Mitchell and Bobby Beale

Though Ben Mitchell (Max Bowden) was only a baby when Cindy was around, and Bobby was not yet born, she is certainly someone who would have been a presence in both of their lives.

The mother of Bobby’s half-siblings, one of which he was responsible for killing, Cindy was likely talked about often while he was growing up.

Being Ian’s half-brother, Ben was also likely aware of Cindy Beale and her fearsome reputation.

Tracey and Winston

It wasn’t just the main characters that knew Cindy, but also a few background characters, including everyone’s favourite barmaid Tracey (Jane Slaughter) and stallholder Winston (Ulric Browne).

With Tracey having been one of the first people Kathy Beale reached out to when she returned from the dead, how will she cope with yet another ghost from the past?

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