A gay bar could be set to open on Albert Square as the new executive producer of EastEnders seeks to champion diversity.
Kate Oates recently joined the soap from its rival Coronation Street and said "hopefully" her plans "will be something exciting for the new year".
In a video posted on the EastEnders Twitter page, she said: "I am really interested in bringing some more LGBTQ characters in, and maybe we will have a new precinct for them as well.
"We are looking at opening a gay bar on the square which will be a super-cool precinct where gay and straight characters can all just hang out, and loads of stories can cross and should just be something really exciting, really fun, really visual and feel really true to multicultural London.
"Hopefully that will be something exciting for the next year."
Oates also hinted at the return of some well-known characters, but would not reveal their identities.
She said: "There is one coming back in spring that I am really excited about, it's going to be for a fairly short stint but I think it's going to have a really big impact."
The executive producer also promised there will be a long-running saga with the Mitchell family, as well as a significant challenge for Jean Slater.
The opening of the gay bar would come more than 30 years after EastEnders was the first UK soap to screen a gay kiss.
More from EastEnders
The moment Colin Russell kissed Barry Clark on the forehead in 1987 attracted a record number of complaints from viewers.
A project to rebuild the set of EastEnders is expected to go £27m over budget, raising concerns over whether licence fee payers' money is being spent wisely.