They starred together in the British soap Eastenders, but are Emma Barton and Una Stubbs related?
Emma Barton and Una Stubbs are not related. However, in 2006, the pair shared a brief familial relationship on screen, with Stubbs playing the role of Barton’s fictional aunt. They remained friends after filming, but are not related.
Read on to learn more about the pair and their time on Eastenders.
Best of British
Eastenders is one of the longest running television shows in British history. It boasts an incredible uninterrupted running period of over thirty-five years. By mid-2020, the show had broadcasted over six thousand episodes.
Since the mid-eighties, hundreds of characters have come and gone. There have been countless storylines, twists and turns, and shocking events. The British public are generally positive towards Eastenders, and it makes up one of the core shows in their television history.
In 2005, Emma Barton joined the cast, playing Honey Mitchell. She was a substantial character, having several storylines that revolved around her family life. She’d star in the show for around three years, leaving in late 2008.
However, the character made a partial return in 2014, followed by a full-time return at the end of 2015. While her acting resume isn’t star-studded and expansive, she made for a popular character on the show.
Una Stubbs joined the show in 2006, starring in just six episodes. In her role, she played the part of Honey Mitchell’s aunt Caroline. This is where the misconception may arise that the pair are related in some way.
As an actor, Una Stubbs had a much more prestigious career than Barton. Her acting endeavours began way back in 1958. As time went on, Stubbs starred in a long list of popular British television shows. She also had starring roles in a string of movies, from 1963 to 2016.
Like many British television actors, Stubbs has also enjoyed a few appearances in live theater. She’s taken roles both in the north of England, and in the West End, in London. Outside of Britain, Stubbs may be most well recognized from her role in Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sherlock. She featured in every episode of the show as Mrs Hudson, Sherlock’s landlady.
Friends After The Fact
In 2018, Emma Barton uploaded a picture to Twitter. This image showed her, and a young Una Stubbs side by side in comparison. The pictures themselves were taken decades apart, but they showed a stark similarity between the two actors.
In this post, Emma Barton marvels that she still calls Stubbs “Aunty Caroline” more than a decade after their story in Eastenders. In fact, in a 2020 article, Emma Barton referenced this fact once again.
When questioned about her return to the show, Barton explained: “Honey’s gone to visit Auntie Caroline, who was in it a few times played by Una Stubbs. I still love saying Una Stubbs is my auntie!”
While Una Stubbs herself never reprised the role of Auntie Caroline, she did continue her acting career in earnest. In the years that followed, between 2006 and 2020, she would star in no fewer than sixteen productions.
Although she was born in 1937, Una Stubbs had no intention of slowing down. There’s a great compilation reel on YouTube, showing Stubbs in her role as Mrs Hudson in BBC’s Sherlock.
It seems unlikely that Eastenders will ever end. The show that united these two actors has such an incredible history, and is evolving all the time. As of 2020, it boasted an incredible thirty-five seasons and beat out other long running shows like The Simpsons.
This is a trend for British TV ‘soaps’, however. Another show, Emmerdale, has been broadcast since 1972. The third most popular show, Coronation Street, premiered in 1960. As of 2020, that made the show an incredible sixty years old.