|Portrayed by||Lynda Baron|
|Introduced by|| Kate Harwood (2006) |
Diederick Santer (2008)
Dominic Treadwell-Collins (2016)
|First Appearance||27 November 2006|
|Duration||2006, 2008–09, 2016-|
Linda is the mother of Jane Beale and Christian Clarke. She appeared for two episodes in 2006, and then regularly from November 2008 to February 2009. On 8 April 2016, it was announced that Linda will return for a Beale family storyline later in the year.
Linda surprises her daughter by coming to Walford for Jane's wedding to Ian Beale. Linda instantly causes controversy when she calls Ian a bad father after she hears his daughter, Lucy Beale, talking to her friend, Lauren Branning, about strippers. She also criticises Pat Evans's earrings at Jane's hen-party, and berates Jane for wearing white when she is marrying for a second time. Linda reveals that Jane's birth name is Lesley, and continues to call her Lesley during her stay. When Jane's affair with Grant Mitchell is revealed at the wedding ceremony, Linda leaves Walford and returned to Florida.
Linda returns on 10 November 2008, telling Ian and Jane that she and her husband Roger Clarke have gone on separate holidays. Ian asks her to make a cake for Suzy Branning to beat Shirley Carter in a cake-baking competition. However, Linda gets upset, starts drinking, and makes a poor effort at the cake. Later, in The Queen Victoria pub, a very drunk Linda tries to come on to Charlie Slater, offending his girlfriend, Brenda Boyle, in the process. Explaining her actions, Linda admits to Ian and Jane that she has split up with Roger and is moving in with them.
Linda has not seen Christian for nearly 20 years before she returns to Walford. Initially, Christian intends to keep his distance from his mother but after learning how Lucy and Peter Beale had lost their mother, Christian attempts to rebuild his relationship with Linda and she briefly moves in with him. When Christian announces that he is going to bring up Roxy Mitchell's daughter, Amy Mitchell, Linda has doubts as to whether it is the right thing for her son. The following night, after Roxy changes her mind, Christian goes back to his old ways of sexual promiscuity, and bringing anyone home. Not being able to live in that environment, Linda decides to move back in with Jane and Ian. She continues to live with the Beales over Christmas.
On 26 January 2009, Linda receives a letter from her husband, asking her to come back to him. Confused, Linda looks for solace at the Queen Victoria pub, sharing a few drinks with Patrick Trueman. Later that day, Jane and Denise Wicks find Linda and Patrick kissing passionately. The next day, Patrick tells Linda that he hopes for a reconciliation with his wife, Yolande Trueman. Trying to put her marriage behind her, Linda decides to stay in Walford, but Ian suggests that she move into sheltered accommodation. Later that day, Linda falls and hurts her leg, and Ian thinks this was a ploy in order for her to stay. While Linda is asleep, Ian steals the letter from her husband, and then invites him to fetch her. On 3 February 2009, Roger arrives at the Beales' house. He declares that his affair is over, and asks Linda to return to Florida. While Jane and Ian are positive about this, Christian warns Linda that his father will only hurt her again. Christian suggests that Linda should move back in with him, but she declines and returns to Florida with Roger.
Since her departure Linda has been mentioned several times by her family. At Christmas 2009 Jane berates Ian for breaking her present from Linda. In April 2010 Masood Ahmed, upon discovering Christian's affair with his married son Syed Masood, pays for Christian to go visit Linda in Florida but he opts not to go. When Ian panics that Jane will discover Lucy's abortion, he sends her to stay with Linda for three weeks from May to June 2010 as a 'birthday present'.