Shane Richie has confirmed he "will" return to 'EastEnders'.

Shane Richie as Alfie Moon

Shane Richie as Alfie Moon

The 53-year-old actor is determined to reprise his role as Alfie Moon on the BBC One soap because his wife Christie Goddard wants him to get out of the house - and she is keen to "make sure" he heads back to Albert Square at some point.

He said: "My wife wants me to get back to work. She's desperate for me to do it ['EastEnders'] - so I will.

"I've had two years off and I think that was enough for me. I'm ready to go back if they'll have me. It's the best gig on TV."

Christie added: "Yes, I'm going to make sure he does."

Shane suffered from anxiety during his early 'EastEnders' days and is glad he spoke openly about his issues.

He added to the Daily Express newspaper: "I think it was important to discuss anxiety. To show people there's nothing to be ashamed of."

Viewers last saw the 'Benidorm' star as Alfie in last year's 'EastEnders' spin-off show 'Kat and Alfie: Redwater'.

The programme told the story of Alfie and wife Kat Moon (Jessie Wallace) heading to Ireland to find her secret son, but the trip nearly killed the pair of them and the show ended with the fates of the beloved characters unknown.

Kat was involved in a potentially-devastating boat accident and Alfie, who has a brain tumour, and was last seen on a hospital bed.

Jessie is set to return to Albert Square as Kat in the coming weeks, but Shane turned down a comeback to give himself a break.

He recently said: "I'm in a fortunate position where I can pick and choose what I want to do and 'EastEnders' at the moment I said no to it.

"I just need to take a break from television and a little break away from showbiz.

"Trust me, it's not because I've got loads of money because that is far from the truth. But I just need to pick and choose."