EastEnders and Carry On actress Dame Barbara Windsor has died aged 83 following a battle with dementia.
Her husband Scott Mitchell told the PA news agency she died just after 8.30pm on Thursday.
Mr Mitchell said in a statement: “It is with deep sadness that I can confirm that my darling wife Barbara passed away at 8.35pm on Thursday 10th December at a London Care Home. Her passing was from Alzheimer’s/Dementia and Barbara eventually died peacefully and I spent the last 7 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 until the end.
“It was not the ending that Barbara or anyone else living with this 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.
“Dementia/Alzheimer’s remains the UKs number one killer. Although in challenging times, I urge the Prime Minister, his Government and other parties to be true to their previous promises and invest more into Dementia/Alzheimer’s Research and Care.
“Thank you to all the drs, nurses and carers who are angels at the Care Home for your kindness and care to Barbara and I throughout her stay with you. You are my heroes.
“And my gratitude to our family, friends and everyone in the media and the general public for all the good wishes and warm support that has been shown to Barbara over the last few years during her illness. Barbara deeply appreciated that.
“May you rest in peace now my precious Bar. I’ve lost my wife, my best friend and soul mate and my heart or life will never feel the same without you.
“I will be making no further statements and now need the time to grieve this painful, personal loss.”