Ian Beale returns to EastEnders

Ian Beale is set to return 'EastEnders' after living for months on the street and fans will be stunned by his appearance

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Adam Woodyatt

Adam Woodyatt

Ian Beale is set to return 'EastEnders' after living on the street for several weeks.

The ambitious businessman - played by Adam Woodyatt - was last seen by viewers leaving the BBC One soap walking along a motorway in his pyjamas and dressing gown after suffering a mental breakdown when fiance Mandy Slater refused to marry him on their wedding day.

He also struggled to cope with half-brother Ben Mitchell confessing he had killed Heather Trott and fans were left wondering what had happened to Albert Square's longest resident.

But now he is set to make a dramatic return over the summer after becoming a bearded down-and-out.

A source told the Daily Star on Sunday newspaper: "Ian is unrecognisable. He's dishevelled, has long hair and a long beard. He looks like a proper tramp.

"Viewers will discover that since he left he's been living rough on the streets of London and has even become friends with other beer-drinking vagrants. It's a shocking storyline.

"A lot of the cast and crew couldn't believe Adam's amazing transformation."

While Ian has been away from the Square his daughter Lucy has been struggling to keep the Beale empire going after he ran up a number of debts.

However, his old friend Sharon Rickman (Letitia Dean) is also returning to Walford and insiders believe she could help get his life back on track.

The insider ­added: "Sharon and Ian grew up together and are like family. If anyone can help him it's her. He's hit rock bottom and is in a bad way. He needs someone as close as Sharon to help him through. He's a broken man.

"There's also killer Ben's ­confession, which will be filmed next month. Whether Ian gets strong enough to turn him in remains to be seen but there's going to be one hell of a fallout."

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