SHANE Richie has revealed that Dame Barbara Windsor reached out to him earlier than his I am A Superstar… Get Me Out Of Right here! debut final month.
The 56-year-old star opened up about his last message from the 83-year-old TV icon, who handed away final night time.
Shane revealed Barbara messaged him earlier than he went into I am A CelebCredit score: Alpha Press
Presenting The One Show alongside Alex Jones this night, Shane mentioned of the icon: “Earlier than I went and did the present within the citadel, earlier than they took our telephones away in isolation, I received a textual content from Scott, Barbara’s husband.
“He left a message saying: ‘The Duchess sends her love, simply be your self’.
“That was the final time I heard from her.”
The candy message final month was the ultimate time he heard from his buddyCredit score: Rex Options
He additionally defined how his affectionate pet identify for Barbara got here round, along with his Walford alter ego Alfie Moon calling her character Peggy ‘Duchess’ on the BBC One cleaning soap as properly.
The actor shared: “That occurred purely by chance, it was within the early days again once I began within the present in 2002.
“Off digicam, I made a joke – we have been speaking about our careers through the years and I mentioned: ‘Ah, you are like a duchess!’
The pair grew shut when starring in EastEnders collectivelyCredit score: BBC
“I believe I used to be making reference to Upstairs, Downstairs so I referred to as her The Duchess off digicam.
“All of the writers and producers can see the studio ground and so they should have twigged onto one thing as a few weeks later I received a script with Alfie and Peggy and I believed: ‘Oh, maintain on, there it’s’ – he was calling her The Duchess!”
The nickname caught over the subsequent 18 years, with Shane enjoying candy tribute to Barbara on Twitter earlier in the present day as he shared a number of images alongside the caption: “There are not any phrases. She’s going to at all times be my Duchess.”
Shane shared his recollections of the star on The One Present this night
Barbara’s husband Scott Mitchell confirmed that the star had died “peacefully” at 8.35pm yesterday [10 December] night at a London care house.
Barbara was identified with Alzheimer’s illness in 2014 and made the information public in 2018.
In a shifting tribute, he referred to as her his “valuable Bar” and mentioned: “I’ve misplaced my spouse, my finest buddy and soul mate.”
He mentioned the cherished actress’s last weeks have been “typical of how she lived her life” and “filled with humour, drama and a combating spirit till the top”.
Dame Barbara handed away final night timeCredit score: Rex Options
Mr Mitchell instructed PA: “Her passing was from Alzheimer’s/dementia and Barbara finally died peacefully and I spent the final seven days by her aspect.
“Myself, her household and pals will bear in mind Barbara with love, a smile and affection for the numerous years of her love, enjoyable, friendship and brightness she delivered to all our lives and the leisure she gave to so many 1000’s of others throughout her profession.
“Barbara’s last weeks have been typical of how she lived her life. Stuffed with humour, drama and a combating spirit till the top.
Her husband Scott shared the unhappy information in a shifting tributeCredit score: Rex Options
“It was not the ending that Barbara or anybody else dwelling with this very merciless illness deserve.
“I’ll at all times be immensely pleased with Barbara’s braveness, dignity and generosity coping with her personal sickness and nonetheless attempting to assist others by elevating consciousness for so long as she may.”
Mr Mitchell, who alongside his spouse campaigned for larger dementia care from the Authorities, added: “Dementia/Alzheimer’s stays the UK’s primary killer.
Barbara had been combating Alzheimer’s illness since 2014Credit score: Rex Options
“Though in difficult instances, I urge the Prime Minister, his authorities and different events to be true to their earlier guarantees and make investments extra into dementia/Alzheimer’s analysis and care.
“Thanks to all of the medical doctors, nurses and carers who’re angels on the care house to your kindness and care to Barbara and I all through her stick with you. You might be my heroes.
“And my gratitude to our household, pals and everybody within the media and most people for all the nice needs and heat help that has been proven to Barbara over the previous few years throughout her sickness. Barbara deeply appreciated that.”
On the finish of his shifting tribute, Mr Mitchell mentioned: “Might you relaxation in peace now my valuable Bar. I’ve misplaced my spouse, my finest buddy and soul mate and my coronary heart or life won’t ever really feel the identical with out you.”