YOU could call her a right little madam – and not just because she played a young Queen Elizabeth I in a Hollywood blockbuster this year.

At just seven years old, flame-haired Maisie Smith, from Westcliff, is fast becoming one of TV’s most cheeky characters.

Until April, she was sat in front of the TV set at home watching EastEnders. Now the feisty youngster is starring in the soap as lovable Tiffany Dean, the youngest daughter of Bianca Jackson, played by Patsy Palmer.

Maisie has already proved to be a big hit with EastEnders fans and this was evident when the youngster visited the Trinity Family Centre charity shop in Westcliff.

The Chalkwell Junior School pupil drew a crowd as she arrived to hand out the prizes for the shop’s raffle.

Maisie was asked to go along to the prize draw by her aunt Tracy Southgate, who is on the charity’s fundraising committee.

“It was nice to be asked to come along and pull out the winning tickets,” said Maisie, who showed she is already settling into life in the public eye by patiently posing for photographs and singing autographs.

“I love being on EastEnders. I really get on with Patsy who plays my mum. She looks after me so well. It’s like I’m her real daughter some days.

“Everyone is really nice. Pam St Clement, who plays Pat Butcher, is also really lovely to me.

Maisie said: “I’m glad I get to be cheeky and say some funny lines. I would never want to be a goody goody. It’s strange people point at me in the street now and ask if I’m the girl from EastEnders. All my friends think it’s great I’m on television. I think I will want to be an actress forever now.”

So being a rising star herself, which famous face would Maisie like to meet? “It would have to be David Tennant,” she said. “I really love Doctor Who and would like to be in the programme.”

Maisie’s dad Steven, said the young actress shares quite a few traits with the character she plays.

He said: “The role is an exaggeration of her own personality. She’s a little madam sometimes, both on and off screen.

“She gets recognised quite a lot when we go out as a family. It’s funny when you see people nudge each other and you can hear them saying, ‘Is that the girl off EastEnders?’ ”

But winning a part in the nation’s favourite soap isn’t the first time Maisie’s been in front of the camera.

In 2006 she won a part in the movie the Other Boleyn Girl, alongside A list Hollywood stars Scarlett Johansson, Natalie Portman and Australian hunk Eric Bana.

The film was released in February this year.

Maisie’s mum Julia, 37, said: “She got to spend a lot of time with Scarlett Johansson on the set and she was really nice to Maisie.

“I think her long red hair helped her get the part. She really has that young Queen Elizabeth look about her.”

Maisie will be enjoying a family Christmas at home, but then it’s all go in the new year.

Her mum said: “She’s got about four months coming up when she’ll be really busy filming for EastEnders.

“She’s got some great story lines coming up.”

THE TRINITY FAMILY CENTRE CHARITY SHOP is a lifeline when it comes to raising funds for the cause, which is making a big impact on members of the Westcliff community.

Clothes, furniture, books and other goods donated to the shop, in West Street, are sold to fund the running of the centre in Argyll Road.

The venue is used by at least 300 people, of all ages, a week. It has a parent and toddler group, an after-school club, family club, a role play group for unemployed adults, an IT suite, where people can learn workplace skills and a holiday club.

The centre also provides a variety of low-cost meals, such as lasagne and chips and burger and chips for the set price of £1.

Founder and chairman, Viv Robson said: “We want the whole community to use the centre, especially people on low incomes, so we have to make sure everything we offer is affordable.

“When the centre first opened we got a lot of Government funding, but that has now stopped. The shop has been going for 15 months. We started it up because we are now totally self-reliant as a charity and have to find ways of funding ourselves.”

“Like a lot of charities, we have been hit hard by the credit crunch. We need people to donate goods. Lately, we’ve found we aren’t getting second-hand clothes being donated. We think this is due to the council now offering a roadside collection service for unwanted clothes, but it means we’re missing out.

“We also need volunteers to work in the shop.”

The charity is operated by five trustees and costs £80,000 a year to run. It was championed in the House of Commons by Southend West Tory MP David Amess who asked for more Government support. He said “Trinity Family Centre helps many people. Any help would be greatly appreciated.”

Goods can be picked up or left outside the shop at 11 West Street. Call 01702 351998 for details.