Brian Conley thinks hate dad is protecting him as he joins EastEnders

He has arrived (Picture: BBC)

Comedian and EastEnders newcomer Brian Conley has taken comfort after spotting a black cab ornament in the Queen Vic – taking it as his late father’s approval of him joining the iconic show.

Brian is playing Sonia Fowler’s (Natalie Cassidy) dad Terry Cant aka Rocky – a cheeky chap with many a story to tell.

But Brian admits to feeling daunted filming his first scene in the Vic – until he spotted the poignant momento.

He told Metro.co.uk: ‘It was much more nerve wracking than I thought. My second day was in the Vic, Rocky is holding court in this bar telling an exaggerated story. I’ve had to hold court, feel very confident straight line. What an honour to be standing in the Vic – it’s a big scene with a lot of characters. I feel very emotional about it!

‘On the shelf, it’s obviously been there a long time, there was a cab – and I knew this my dad who was a cab driver, looking out for me – look I cry at adverts. I just wandered around and take photos and nick something but you’re not allowed – I’ve got a beer mat though!

‘I’m addicted to it, it’s been there for 35 years. My jobs are sporadic so it’s a real honour. My dad had bowel cancer in the last six months, he was a huge fan, always talking about it – he was a cab driver working at the BBC in 25 years.

‘He would often be there a lot and post posters in the markets – you could see me in the background of a Gillian Taylforth scene. But seeing that cab – it’s like I’m in safe hands. I have been watching with my mum – that New Year story about male suicide with Danny Dyer was just incredible. I’ve been on every set now, sort of getting used to it.’

The excited actor added: ‘Arriving on the Square, sneaking in, to do some press stuff, it was mad. And then having a photo on the Albert Square – looking at it all and it’s all real – it’s been there for so long. The outside of Sonia’s house, this was a limp tree when it started. It’s huge now!

‘It’s amazing, it became a reality then. My first scripts came, highlighter pen out, look at THAT! I’ve worn my highlighters out.’

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