Ex-EastEnders stars and some of the kids you saw on the show are taking part in Children in Need’s hit line-up

When Jack Collier read the script for this year’s Children in Need star-studded eighties-themed special, he was excited to play Doctor Jack Kershaw on the ITV cookery show First Dates, before realising he’d still…

Ex-EastEnders stars and some of the kids you saw on the show are taking part in Children in Need's hit line-up

When Jack Collier read the script for this year’s Children in Need star-studded eighties-themed special, he was excited to play Doctor Jack Kershaw on the ITV cookery show First Dates, before realising he’d still be playing Arthur Fowler in EastEnders as he and his Telly Bites co-stars filled out the fun lineup.

“I know the time is right for me to give up the derby with Arthur because I think of EastEnders and First Dates as my things in life. They are two of my roles, and this is what I will look back on with mixed feelings at the end of my career,” explains Collier.

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He’ll be joined by his former co-stars Barbara Windsor (Pat Butcher), Kara Tointon (Debbie Hunter), and Adam Woodyatt (Ian Beale) – along with a swathe of up-and-coming stars – in the line-up for the eighties-themed line-up.

“There are many members of EastEnders and First Dates families sitting down on the sofa and you will soon see they are excellent people, great cooks and all very playful. We were so lucky to have them,” says Mike Webster, Executive Producer of the Fundraiser.

Our celebrity guests, posed in all their Eighties glory, pose in the studio – and in the kitchen – for a series of Second Look photographs!

“But the star of the show, we believe, will be Kevin Lygo, Director of ITV Studios, who is a top-notch cook and especially after the pre-recorded programme, it will be hard to resist him!”

And don’t miss the launch of Radio 1’s ‘Give ‘Em Hell, Harry’ Weekend on Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two, celebrating the work of Harry Hill, with Scott Mills hosting the line-up with a live performance by Richard Blackwood!

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The Eighties show will be broadcast on BBC One on Friday, November 10 at 8pm. It’s not just EastEnders stars like Kayleigh Brewer (Cathy), Adam Woodyatt (Ian Beale), and Kara Tointon (Debbie Hunter) that have starred in the children’s fundraising show – their dad, Sid Owen, has been a popular host for the show in years gone by, and has even appeared in the likes of Emergency B*****d (with Michael Madsen), Casino Royale (with Martin Bayfield), and spy thriller The Stand-In.

Helen Skelton, the show’s host and a former Olympic Skiing medalist and presenter, was full of excitement for the eighth annual annual fundraising event.

“Children in Need is always a huge, huge night, but because it comes about from the same production team and me being a huge fan of the shows they’ve been on, it’s always just such a lovely evening – amazing food, amazing company. It’s just very relaxing.”

And speaking about the Star Line-Up for this year’s show, she said that it’ll be an exciting blend of the younger generation who’ve grown up watching the shows on and one day starring in them – and the powerhouse credits of the ’80s – “such brilliant people who did amazing things in TV”.

Photo: ITV

Will there be karaoke sessions? Not a chance – Helen has got her claws out for them! “They’ve got some great tunes that aren’t suitable for children or people like me! But we’ll have a sing along or two.”

The first part of Saturday (November 10)’s run of Children in Need shows will be hosted live by Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield from 8pm on BBC One. It will feature performances by Jessie J, JLS, Cheryl, Marvin Humes, John Bishop, Alan Carr, Jon Culshaw, Matt Johnson, Rak-Su, David Walliams, Mr Blobby, the Voice Kids 2017 winner and Clare Balding.

Children in Need airs on BBC One on Saturday, November 10 at 8pm.

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