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Last Updated: Friday, 4 June, 2004, 16:39 GMT 17:39 UK
EastEnders returns to US screens
Barbara Windsor as Peggy Mitchell
Barbara Windsor became one of EastEnders best-loved characters
BBC soap EastEnders, which was dropped from the BBC America schedules last year, is returning to US screens.

The show was dropped from the BBC's US network in September, despite an outcry from fans.

It will now appear on cable TV channel Echostar's Dish Network, and will cost viewers ($3.95) 2 for four episodes.

The channel "will start airing episodes of EastEnders from the point where the show finished in the US last September 2003," the BBC said.

"Four episodes will air on Sundays and four on Mondays - with repeat airings on Thursdays and Fridays," a BBC statement said.

Viewers will also be able to buy a monthly subscription for $9.95 (5.55).

"Expatriates and other fans from America and around the world are going to be ecstatic to be able to watch EastEnders again," said Susan Arnold, vice-president of Programming for Dish Network.

Disastrous ratings

The BBC said it was "delighted" that viewers in the US could see the programme again.

Despite being one of the BBC's biggest programmes in the UK the soap has failed to translate its success to the US. It was taken off BBC America because of disastrous ratings.

"EastEnders ratings have consistently under-performed compared with the rest of BBC America's schedule, despite inheriting one of the channel's strongest audiences and promotional support," a spokeswoman said in September.

"The programme lost BBC America an average of 69% of its audience share when it was aired," the spokeswoman said.

When the show was let go, more than 16,000 fans signed an online petition urging BBC America to bring it back.


SEE ALSO:
Protest grows over EastEnders axe
06 Oct 03  |  Entertainment
Sixteen million watch Den's return
30 Sep 03  |  Entertainment
EastEnders cleans up at TV awards
08 Sep 03  |  Entertainment


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