Celebrities

Joanna Lumley leads tributes to ‘darling friend’ Dame June Whitfield

A host of famous faces having flocked to social media to pay tribute to Absolutely Fabulous star Dame June Whitfield after she passed away aged 93.

On Friday, Dame June’s agent announced the veteran actress had "passed away peacefully last night”.

Shortly after the sad news emerged, Joanna Lumley, who starred as Patsy alongside June in the hit comedy, remembered her co-star in an emotional tribute.

"I am heartbroken to lose such a darling friend and shall never forget her sensational talent, humour and her generosity to us all who had the joy of working with her on Ab Fab," she said.

She added to ITV News: "She will always have a most special place in my heart."

Julia Sawalha, who played the loving granddaughter to Dame June’s character in Absolutely Fabulous, also took to Twitter to pay tribute to her friend and teacher.

The Loose Women star posted: "Thank you #damejunewhitfield,for teaching me my craft with such grace and dignity.

"I always wanted you to know how in awe of you I was, however, you were always far too humble to accept my adoration. You were a great source of inspiration to me. Bye-bye Gran."

Actress and comedian Miranda Hart tweeted to say that Dame June’s death was "so very sad".

She added: "I once sent a letter to many actors as a budding (I mean desperate) comedy actor to ask for sponsorship for the Edinburgh Festival.

"Dame June replied. Fifteen years later when I met her she had all my letters and the notes of the show she sponsored.

"I cried then too."

Television producer, Jon Plowman, who worked on episodes of Absolutely Fabulous and the 2016 film version, tweeted to say he was "very sad" to hear that Dame June had died.

He wrote: "There was no-one with more warmth or a better ability to just ‘place’ a line, always an act of utter precision. Hit after hit! Take it from Here Terry and June Absolutely Fabulous over seven decade. A great loss."

Dame June enjoyed a career stretching back to the 1940s including roles in the Carry On films and the long-running sitcom Terry And June.

She was born in Streatham, south London, in 1925 and was evacuated from the capital during the Second World War.

The actress graduated from the Royal Academy Of Dramatic Art prior to the end of the conflict, and her career in entertainment began in the same decade with West End stage work.

Dame June met her husband Tim Aitchison in the 1950s. The pair went on to have a daughter, Suzy, who followed in her mother’s footsteps and became an actress. She also appeared in a show written by Saunders, Jam And Jerusalem.

Dame June enjoyed a long and varied career, excelling in comic roles before tackling shorter parts – and making numerous guest appearances later in her career.

Those appearances spanned a range of popular British TV shows including Jonathan Creek, Doctor Who, Coronation Street and EastEnders.

Dame June also appeared in numerous Radio 4 productions during her career, and played Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple.

She was granted an OBE at the 1985 Birthday Honours, and was made a CBE in 1998.

She was made a dame in the 2017 Birthday Honours for her services to drama and entertainment in a career spanning eight decades.

Read More

Showbiz and TV editor’s picks

  • Curtis Pritchard quits DWTS
  • Jason Orange MIA
  • Corrie – Roy’s tragedy
  • Netflix record breaker

Source: Read Full Article