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Dame Barbara Windsor’s funeral held with ‘Queen Peggy’ tribute

The funeral of EastEnders and Carry On actress Dame Barbara Windsor has taken place in London.

Ross Kemp, who played her on-screen son in the soap, was among the 30 mourners and gave a reading, as did actor and friend Christopher Biggins.

Dame Barbara

died in December at the age of 83, having had dementia.

There were floral arrangements spelling Babs, The Dame and Saucy, and a mock pub sign showing her as The Queen Peggy in the style of the soap’s Queen Vic.

Dame Barbara played pub landlady Peggy Mitchell in EastEnders for more than two decades.

Dame Barbara Windsor tribute at her funeral

PA Media

Scott Mitchell, who was married to Dame Barbara for 20 years, was joined at Golders Green Crematorium by family and friends including comedians Matt Lucas and David Walliams.

“As Covid has denied so many of Barbara’s family, friends and fans a chance to say farewell properly, I wanted to share the order of service to let people be a small part of it,” Mr Mitchell told the PA news agency.

“My heart goes out to every family who have experienced the same restrictions at their loved ones’ funerals.”

Left-right: Christopher Biggins, Ross Kemp and David Walliams were among the mourners

PA Media

He added: “I would again like to thank my family, friends, the media and the public for their incredible support and well wishes since Barbara’s passing.”

Dame Barbara’s coffin was brought into the crematorium to sound of Frank Sinatra’s On The Sunny Side Of The Street, and the service featured a recording of Sparrows Can’t Sing from the actress’s 1963 film of the same.

It finished with the famous topless photo of Dame Barbara from the film Carry On Camping, alongside her quote: “That picture will follow me to the end.”

Dame Barbara Windsor tribute at her funeral

PA Media

Long-time friend Anna Karen, who played Dame Barbara’s on-screen sister Aunt Sal in EastEnders, also paid tribute during the service.

The funeral was also attended by Loose Women’s Jane Moore and EastEnders actor Jamie Borthwick. However, the numbers were limited due to coronavirus social distancing.

Dame Barbara Windsor tribute at her funeral

PA Media

Alzheimer’s Research UK recently said it had seen a spike in donations since Dame Barbara’s death, and a JustGiving page set up as a tribute to her and in aid of the charity has raised more than £150,000 (including Gift Aid).

Mr Mitchell said that was “beyond anything we may have dreamed of”.

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