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EastEnders legend Dame Barbara Windsor has died aged 83

EastEnders legend Dame Barbara Windsor
(Image credit: FilmMagic)

Dame Barbara was a true EastEnders great as Peggy Mitchell

Dame Barbara Windsor, who famously played Peggy Mitchell in EastEnders, has died aged 83.

The hugely popular actress was also much loved for her many parts in the Carry On film series.

Dame Barbara as Peggy Mitchell alongside her EastEnders screen sons, Grant and Phil

Dame Barbara as Peggy Mitchell alongside her screen sons, Grant and Phil (Image credit: BBC)

Dame Barbara was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2014. Her husband Scott Mitchell said she died peacefully at a London care home at 8.35pm on Thursday.

Mr Mitchell told PA: “Her passing was from Alzheimer’s/dementia and Barbara eventually died peacefully and I spent the last seven days by her side.

“Myself, her family and friends will remember Barbara with love, a smile and affection for the many years of her love, fun, friendship and brightness she brought to all our lives and the entertainment she gave to so many thousands of others during her career.

“Barbara’s final weeks were typical of how she lived her life. Full of humour, drama and a fighting spirit to the end.”

The couple made the news that she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s public in 2018.

Mr Mitchell added: “It was not the ending that Barbara or anyone else living with his very cruel disease deserve. I will always be immensely proud of Barbara’s courage, dignity and generosity dealing with her own illness and still trying to help others by raising awareness for as long as she could.”

Dame Barbara first joined EastEnders in 1994 as Peggy Mitchell and quickly made a huge impact. Peggy was the only one who could keep her wayward sons Grant and Phil in order.

Peggy also didn’t take any nonsense as the landlady of the Queen Vic, memorably telling anyone that crossed her to “Get outta man pub!”. The character eventually bowed out of the soap in 2016.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who once popped up in EastEnders, is among those paying tribute. He tweeted: “So sad about Barbara Windsor, so much more than a great pub landlady & and a 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.”

Among the many Carry On films Dame Barbara starred in was Carry On Camping, Carry On Doctor and Carry On Spying.

She also enjoyed numerous other TV roles including parts in The Rag Trade, Dad’s Army, and Worzel Gummidge.