Cornell S John will join the cast of EastEnders next month as Sam, Ava's ex-husband and Dexter's long-lost father.

Ava and Dexter haven’t seen Sam since he walked out when Dexter was a baby. Sam couldn’t cope with the responsibility that came with a new born and one day, when it all became too much, he went out for a pint of milk and never came back. Sam has been living the single life ever since but after the recent passing of his father, Sam has decided he needs to get to know his son, however long that may take.

Played by Cornell S John, whose previous credits include Kidulthood, Adulthood and Inside Men, Sam is charismatic, charming, a master manipulator and what Sam wants, he usually gets. He is sure to create a stir on the Square but just how welcoming will Ava and Dexter be?

Speaking about his casting Cornell said: "It’s a great honour and pleasure to be joining the EastEnders family. I look forward to working with the cast and to Sam’s adventures on the square… doof doof."

Lorraine Newman, Executive Producer added: "We are delighted to have Cornell join the cast of EastEnders playing Sam. Cornell’s powerful presence and natural gravitas will ensure he’s a strong presence on screen. The addition of Sam, gives us a solid family unit with Dexter and Ava. However, after such a long absence, sparks are sure to initially fly. Let’s just hope he’s got the milk…!"