Former Allo Allo! star, Vicki Michelle MBE is to officially open a new block of luxury retirement flats this week.

The exclusive development of 29 one and two bedroom apartments known at Hollyoak House on High Road, Loughton, will open at noon on Friday, October 4.

Each apartment benefits from a private terrace or balcony with secure parking available and even has storage space for mobility scooters.

Ms Michelle, who is best known for her role as Yvette Cart-Blanche in the popular BBC TV series, has been given the honours of the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The actress, who has lived in Loughton for more than 30 years and supporter of Age UK and patron of the Haven House Children's Hospice, said: "It's really important that elderly people in the area feel safe.

"I really like the community area because it means that there's somewhere to go to talk with somebody.

"This is perfect for a couple or someone who finds themselves on their own and want to downsize so they can live peacefully in style and comfort."

Henry Smith, CEO of property developers, Aitch Group, said: "We are delighted to welcome Vicki Michelle to our new prestigious development.

"Hollyoak House will provide peace, relaxation and tranquillity in equal measure.

"The gated, secure development will have an onsite day manager, a residents club lounge and communal gardens to cater for all your day-to-day needs.

"In addition, the development sits right in the heart of the high-street providing easy access to GP clinics, supermarkets, plus an array of cafes and restaurants."