Words: Jamie Tabberer; picture: BBC
Barbara Windsor has died at the age of 83, it has been confirmed.
The showbiz icon was known for her roles in the Carry On films and as Peggy Mitchell on BBC One soap EastEnders, passed away yesterday evening in a London care home.
Her husband Scott Mitchell confirmed the news, saying she will be remembered for the "love, fun, friendship and brightness she brought to all our lives."
He added that her final days were "typical of how she lived her life" and "full of humour, drama and a fighting spirit until the end."
Windsor, who battled Alzheimer's disease in her later years, was made a Dame in 2016.
"She campaigned for the lonely and the vulnerable"
Prime Minister Boris Johnson led the tributes, saying: "So sad about Barbara Windsor, so much more than a great pub landlady & Carry On star.
"She campaigned for the lonely and the vulnerable - and cheered the world up with her own British brand of harmless sauciness & innocent scandal. Thoughts with Scott and all her family & friends."
So sad about Barbara Windsor, so much more than a great pub landlady & Carry On star. She campaigned for the lonely and the vulnerable - and cheered the world up with her own British brand of harmless sauciness & innocent scandal. Thoughts with Scott and all her family & friends.— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) December 11, 2020
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "RIP Dame Barbara Windsor. A true national icon, and an inspirational campaigner on dementia."
Steve McFadden, who plays Windsor's on-screen son Phil Mitchell on EastEnders said via a rep that he was "devastated" by the loss.
Fellow EastEnders star Patsy Palmer said on Instagram: "I’m extremely sad to hear that my friend “Dame“ Barbara Windsor has passed away. I’m sitting here thinking of the 100s of memories we shared. Too many to comprehend. We were like family for a long time, ups downs, ins and outs but you will never meet a more professional actress than Babs".
In a statement, an Alzheimer's Society rep said: "Dame Barbara Windsor was an amazingly true, much-loved national treasure, and in speaking out about her experiences shone like a beacon for others affected by dementia. Our heart goes out to her husband Scott Mitchell and all their family and friends at this very sad time.
"Alzheimer’s Society is incredibly grateful to have had Barbara and her husband Scott’s support - what they achieved over the last couple of years for dementia has been truly awe-inspiring."
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