Grant and Sharon share a moment in EastEnders

EastEnders - Sharon and Grant in 2016

Struggling to come to terms with his mum’s illness, Grant Mitchell (Ross Kemp) turns to an old flame – ex-wife Sharon (Letitia Dean) – in tonight’s (17 May) episode of EastEnders.

As Sharon tries to help Grant, old feelings begin to resurface between the pair and the tension starts to build. Will they be able to resist temptation?

EastEnders new Sharon and Grant

Grant and Sharon previously married in 1991 but his vicious temper caused Sharon to seek comfort in the arms of his brother Phil (Steve McFadden) just one year later.

The ensuing storyline – dubbed ‘Sharongate’ – spanned 1992-1994 and saw Sharon have an on/off affair with Phil which was finally outed in the Queen Vic after an unwittingly-made tape recording of Sharon discussing the affair fell into Grant’s hands and was played at Phil and Kathy’s (Gillian Taylforth) engagement party. The storyline was a ratings hit with 25.3m viewers tuning in to witness Sharon and Phil’s public shaming.

Grant later sought a reunion with a receptive Sharon but she was just playing along to get back at him for his hostile treatment of her both during their marriage and since their split. Sharon stopped short of fully humiliating Grant but followed through on her decision to leave the Square and stay with her mum Angie in 1995. Sharon returned to the Square in 2001 in Grant’s absence and had a relationship with Phil but it didn’t last. She was briefly reunited with Grant in 2005 and the pair shared a tender moment in the hallway of the Queen Vic which was witnessed by Sharon’s second hubby Dennis Rickman (Nigel Harman).

Sharon has since gotten back together with Phil and the pair were hitched in September 2014 despite Phil’s ex Shirley’s (Linda Henry) best efforts to halt proceedings by exposing her affair with Phil and shooting him.  Phil and Sharon recently split as a result of his drinking and unreasonable behaviour.

 

EastEnders - Grant and Sharon in 1991

Grant and Sharon tie the knot in a Christmas Day set episode of EastEnders aired on Boxing Day 1991.

EastEnders - Sharon, Phil and Grant in 1992

1992: Sharon finds herself caught between the Mitchell brothers.

Ross made his first ever appearance as Grant in 1990 when he arrived in Albert Square with brother Phil. The pair soon became a hit with viewers, peaking in popularity during the Sharongate storyline. Other storylines saw him in another stormy marriage to Tiffany Raymond (Martine McCutcheon) which ended in her tragic demise leaving Grant to bring up their daughter Courtney alone, as well as numerous fallings out and scrapes with his brother. Ross left the series in 1999 but returned for separate stints in 2005 and 2006 which saw Grant help get sister Sam out of prison and have an affair with Ian Beale’s partner Jane.

The BBC announced that he would reprise the role again in January – shortly after Dame Barbara Windsor announced she was quitting the role of Peggy for good. Ross said of his return at the time:

“When I was approached about returning to EastEnders for Barbara’s final episodes, it was something I could not turn down. Barbara is a very close friend so when I learned of the storyline, it felt right that the Mitchell brothers are reunited with their mother for the last time. I am really looking forward to going back to EastEnders and filming what are set to be some classic EastEnders episodes.”

EastEnders airs tonight (17 May) from 7.25pm on BBC One. The episode is also Peggy Mitchell’s final episode.

Grant made a brief appearance in Friday’s (13 May) episode when he was seen listening to a voicemail message – left by Sharon and urging him to come home – in his apartment in Portugal. He returned to the Square in last night’s (16 May) episode.

Grant Mitchell

Early Days: Grant in his role of Queen Vic landlord in 1993.

EastEnders Grant return

2016: EastEnders fans caught a glimpse of Grant last week.

EastEnders, Mondays and Fridays at 8pm and Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7.30pm on BBC One