Exclusive interview with EastEnders' Perry Fenwick

British icon... Billy Mitchell (Credit: BBC)It’s a biggest day of Billy’s life as he carries the Olympic Torch through Walford on next Monday’s ‘EastEnders’. Here, actor Perry Fenwick tells our resident soap expert Jon Horsley how he gets on…

It’s a big day for Billy…
His biggest, yes. It’s enormous for him. He’s never had to do anything like this before. It’s his moment in the limelight and he’s terrified of messing it up.

How did Billy win the honour?
Well, it came about ages ago. ‘EastEnders’ are good about planning ahead with stuff like this so it came up last year. Initially it was Billy and Fat Boy who were up for it but it came down to Billy and that’s the right decision, if you ask me.

And there’s a live bit of the episode where you’re carrying the real torch, is that right?
Yes.  And like Billy, I am also terrified at what might go wrong as I carry the Olympic torch though Albert Square. Filming up to it was like a dress rehearsal of my worst nightmare!

His journey to the torch isn’t easy, is it?

Of course not! It wouldn’t be a soap if it was. I can’t give too much away but he has to get from miles away to the route and it doesn’t look as if he’s going to make it.

So what are you looking forward to about the Olympics?
Well, not everyone will say it’s in the spirit – but I want to see the football. I’m interested in how that’s going to go. But I’ll get into most of it and become one of those people who becomes an instant expert in events I don’t know anything about. Suddenly having an opinion about the women’s javelin and the like.

And who would win a 100m sprint in ‘EastEnders’?

Well, it’s all about age, that.  I mean, Johnny Partridge, who plays Christian, is very fit. But Tony Discipline has 20 years on us, so probably him.

Not Shane Ritchie then?
No. No. Not if football is anything to go by. I have to tell you Shane is rubbish at football.

You can see Billy carrying the Olympic torch in two special episodes of 'EastEnders' on Monday 23 July at 8pm and 9pm.