EastEnders star Linda Henry is best known for portraying the role of fiery Shirley Carter since 2006.
However, the 62-year-old actress has enjoyed a lengthy and varied career beyond the BBC soap opera.
In Albert Square, Linda's character is the former wife of Kevin Wicks (Phil Daniels) and mother to Carly (Kellie Shirley), Dean (Matt Di Angelo), Mick (Danny Dyer) and the late Jimbo.
Shirley has been involved in tumultuous storylines over the years, including her best friend Heather Trott (Cheryl Fergison) being murdered by then-boyfriend Phil Mitchell’s son Ben.
The Walford resident has a complicated family life, with her son Mick Carter originally thought to be her brother, while her two other children, Dean and Carly, no longer live in Albert Square.
But it's not the first time Linda has appeared on the long-running BBC soap.
The actress had a short role in EastEnders in 1991, playing Lorraine Salter, the mother of teenage tearaway Mandy Salter.
She only played the character for one year before returning to the soap as Shirley 15 years later.
Telly fans will likely recognise Linda from another hugely popular drama as she starred in ITV prison drama Bad Girls as Yvonne Atkins back in 1999.
She was lauded for her portrayal as the feisty prisoner on the series, which ran from 1999 to 2006, with Linda starring in seasons one to five before she was killed off.
Linda has also starred in The Bill and Birds of a Feather but it's her role as queen Shirley Carter that has achieved huge popularity with soap fans.
She also had a minor role in the 2005 British blockbuster film The Business, which also co-starred her EastEnders on-screen son Danny Dyer.
Linda started acting at the age of 16 when she joined the Old Vic Youth Theatre in 1979.
Afterwards, she began attending drama classes alongside Rowan Atkinson in Edinburgh before attending Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art from the age of 17.
As of 2021, she is the seventh-longest serving actress in the history of EastEnders, behind only June Brown, Pam St. Clement, Letitia Dean, Wendy Richard, a tied Gillian Taylforth and Natalie Cassidy, having played the character Shirley Carter for 15 years (from 2006 onwards).
Here's to another 15 years of Linda Henry's acting exploits, on EastEnders or otherwise.
Linda is married to husband Stavros Virilis after tying the knot married in 1992.
They share one daughter together named Ellie Louisa Viliris.
For more of the latest showbiz news from Daily Star, make sure you sign up to one of our newsletters here.
Source: Read Full Article