EastEnders welcomes Denise Welch as transgender character Kyle's mum Alison


Denise Welch looks at home in Albert Square as she strides into BBC One soap EastEnders to play Alison Slater, the mother of Kyle Slater.

Alison visits her son, portrayed by Riley Carter Millington, for the first time since he decided to transition.

However, she is struggling to accept her son's choice and there is bound to be drama when the pair confront each other. How will she react when she sees him?

Denise Welch and Riley Carter Millington in EastEnders

Denise, 57, is no stranger to soap having played Natalie Barnes in Coronation Street from 1997-2000.

Talking about her role, the former Loose Women panellist said: "I'm thrilled to be part of such an iconic show. I have friends in the cast and can't wait to start. It's a short stint but such a powerful role and I'm thrilled to be taking it on."

Denise Welch, Riley Carter Millington and Lacey Turner in EastEnders

Notable credits include Waterloo Road as flirtatious French teacher Steph Haydock, winning Celebrity Big Brother in 2012 and enlivening Boy Meets Girl, a BBC Two sitcom about a transgender character.

Denise has released her debut novel, If They Could See Me Now. She recently tweeted a photo in which she was seen wearing a bikini.

Kyle was born Sarah Slater, but life is still a struggle despite his transition. He aspires to be a renowned chef and to achieve his dream, he ran the kitchen in his mother's Blackpool B&B.

Since moving to Walford, he has found a sympathetic ear in half-sister Stacey Branning, played by Lacey Turner.

Riley on set with Lacey Turner (BBC Pictures)

Kyle is the son of the late Brian Slater.

The scenes in this episode will be broadcast on May 3 on BBC One.