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EastEnders’ Letitia Dean shares sad family news in British Soap Awards speech

EastEnders star Letitia Dean, who has been playing iconic character Sharon Watts for nearly four decades on the BBC soap, scooped up the coveted Outstanding Achievement award.

As she took to the stage to huge applause at London's Hackney Empire, she was greeted by her former on-screen mum Anita Dobson.

Accepting her award, Letitia thanked the cast and crew of the BBC soap before sharing a sad family loss at the end of her acceptance speech.

She also said that it was "overwhelming" to win and that she was "so touched" by the love from everyone at home and in the room.

She said: "I lost my daddy a week ago, so this is for my daddy, I hope he's proud," as the audience cheered her.

Letitia added: "And for my darling mummy and I hope you enjoy your fish and chips," before ending: "But seriously, thank you guys,

"I'm not very good at this public speaking, but I do love you all and thank you so much for the way you love me."

A montage of Letitia's best bits played out, with Anita telling the crowd how supportive Letitia had been to her on her first day before her co-stars Kellie Bright, Gillian Taylforth and Steve McFadden paid tribute to her.

Anita told the crowd: "The recipient of this award, I have known for a very long time.

"I first met her when she was 16 years old! She’s been in over 2000 episodes, she’s had 237 duff duffs, she’s also been landlady of the Queen Vic – 6 times!

"Amazing storylines, and the revelation of her affair with Phil Mitchell – which brought in 23.5 million viewers!

"Not bad hey? She’s quirky, funny, talented, glorious, glamourous, an icon."

EastEnders and Emmerdale scooped the most awards during the 2022 ceremony, which has been the first one since 2019.

Both managed to bag four awards each, but Emmerdale took home all of the viewer-voted awards and also won Best Soap.

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