Celebrities have taken to social media to lend their support to Barbara Windsor, following her Alzheimer’s disgnosis.
The celebrated actress, 80, was diagnosed with the condition in 2014, but as the disease progresses her family were forced to reveal the news.
Twitter was awash with celebrities sending their best wishes to the Eastenders and Carry On film stalwart.
Former co-star Ross Kemp said: “Very proud of Scott and Barbara for speaking openly about Barbara’s diagnosis. I hope by talking openly it will make it easier for others to talk about this dreadful disease. I love both Barbara and Scott very much.”
Piers Morgan said: “Sending my love & support to the fabulous Dame Barbara Windsor, one of my favourite people. Alzheimer’s is a horrible thing. She & Scott going public about it like this is a typically gutsy decision by one of the gutsiest ladies I know. We’re all rooting for you, Babs!”
Eammonn Holmes said: “Love this Woman! Ruth and I wish the #NationalTreasure that is Dame Barbara Windsor the very best after her Alzheimer’s diagnosis.”
Tony Blackburn tweeted: “So sorry to hear the news about Barbara Windsor this morning. She’s a lovely lady.Lots of love.”
And Lorainne Kelly said: “Such sad news about Barbara Windsor – a funny, kind, generous, big-hearted woman. Alzheimer’s is a very cruel disease. I hope she knows how much she is loved. Thoughts with her husband Scott.”
Dame Barbara appeared in nine Carry On films and played the pub landlord Peggy Mitchell in EastEnders.
The actress first appeared on stage at the age of 13 in a pantomime and was soon performing in the West End musical Love From Judy.
In 1964 she worked on her first Carry On film – Carry on Spying.
She was also in sitcoms including Dad’s Army and One Foot in the Grave.
In 2009 she was given a Lifetime Achievement Award at The British Soap Awards.
Tim Parry, director at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “We are saddened to hear of Dame Barbara’s diagnosis with Alzheimer’s. It’s to be congratulated that Scott is speaking out to encourage other affected individuals and families to do the same when it’s right for them.
“It’s important to bring the disease out into the open as a crucial step towards us tackling it. Alzheimer’s is a physical disease, in the same way that cancer or heart disease are, and there shouldn’t be stigma in being open about it.”
He described Dame Barbara as a “much-loved figure on our screens and in public life”, adding: “Our hearts go out to her and her family. We hope she is able to maintain and enjoy her quality of life for as long as possible.”