Former BBC actor Joseph Shade, accused of sexual offences against four girls aged between 13 and 16

A FORMER EastEnders star is to stand on trial after denying nine sex offences involving young girls.

Joseph Shade was a child actor when he played Ian Beale’s son, Peter, for six years.

The 23-year-old youth worker is accused of abusing four girls.

Former EastEnders actor Joseph Shade, 23, who played Peter Beale in the BBC soap opera, has denied nine counts of sexual abuse against four teenage girls. Photo: Archant

He has been charged with abuse of a position of trust and inciting sexual activity with a girl, and sexual activity with a girl.

Today, he appeared at Norwich Crown Court in a ten minute hearing.

He pleaded not guilty to eight counts of causing or inciting sexual activity with a girl while in a position of trust in north Norfolk.

Shade who lives with his girlfriend at her family’s home in Sheringham, also denied one count of sexual activity with a girl.

The charges involve four alleged victims who were aged between 13 and 16 at the time of the alleged offences between December 2012 and March 2015.

Shade was charged with the offences in October following an investigation by Norfolk Police’s Child Abuse Investigation Unit.

His trial is set for 31 July and is expected to last five or six days.

Shade’s barrister Matthew McNiff said Shade had requested that his trial be held as soon as possible, but court officials said no earlier date was available.