Ross Kemp pays emotional tribute to Barbara Windsor with moving eulogy

Ross Kemp pays emotional tribute to Barbara Windsor with moving eulogy

‘The public loved her and she loved them back’: Ross Kemp pays emotional tribute to EastEnders legend and on-screen mum Barbara Windsor in moving eulogy at her funeral

  • The EastEnders legend was laid to rest at Golders Green crematorium on Friday after losing her battle with Alzheimer’s in December, aged 83 
  • Ross, 56, who played Barbara’s on-screen son Grant Mitchell in the BBC soap, honoured the actress with heartfelt words 
  • Speaking at the funeral, which was attended by Barbara’s friends, family and co-stars, Ross gave a speech in which he noted how much the nation loved her

Ross Kemp paid an emotional and tearful tribute to Dame Barbara Windsor as he delivered a moving eulogy at her funeral.

The EastEnders legend was laid to rest at Golders Green crematorium on Friday after losing her battle with Alzheimer’s in December, aged 83.

And Ross, 56, who played Barbara’s on-screen son Grant Mitchell in the BBC soap, honoured the actress with heartfelt words as he said: ‘The public loved her, she loved them back.’

Tribute: Ross Kemp paid an emotional and tearful tribute to Dame Barbara Windsor as he delivered a moving eulogy at her funeral

Speaking at the funeral, which was attended by a selection Barbara’s friends, family and co-stars, Ross gave a moving speech in which he noted how much the nation loved her. 

It’s said that he also got emotional as he told a funny story about his co-star in which he remarked how popular she was with the public.

‘Ross’ speech was so incredibly moving and uplifting in equal measure….it was very much from the heart and he got teary at times’ a source told The Mirror. 

They continued: ‘He told a wonderful story about how producers on EastEnders wanted Grant to slap Peggy in a big fight scene but he told producers he couldn’t do it.

Beloved friend: Ross, 56, who played Barbara’s on-screen son Grant Mitchell in the BBC soap, honoured the actress with heartfelt words as he said: ‘The public loved her, she loved them back’

‘Instead he pretended to do but Babs took her art so seriously she performed this huge acrobatic act and flew back over the table onto the floor.’

The insider went on to say how Ross explained that Barbara was so convincing and loved by the public that he had received thousands of letters a day from disgruntled soap fans condemning him for being a ‘terrible bloke’.

Meanwhile, in his eulogy, shared in The Sun with permission by Barbara’s husband Scott Mitchell, Ross said: ‘The public loved her, she loved them back and they loved her even more for it.’

Sadly missed: The EastEnders legend was laid to rest at Golders Green crematorium on Friday after losing her battle with Alzheimer’s in December, aged 83

He also remarked that the Peggy Mitchell star has ‘time for anyone’, no matter who they were.

He said: ‘If you walked down the road with Bar, you knew a five minute walk would take you at least ten to fifteen minutes. She had time for everyone and anyone, no matter who or what they were.’

Ross went on: ‘She was also a diplomat, who could walk with queens and princes, gangsters and politicians but she never lost the common touch, she was just as happy having a quick chat with a plumber, a baker or a candlestick maker.’   

Stars including David Walliams, Matt Lucas and Christopher Biggins had joined Ross, Scott and other mourners at the service in North London on Friday.

Speech: Speaking at the funeral, which was attended by a selection Barbara’s friends, family and co-stars, Ross gave a moving speech in which he noted how much the nation loved her

Moving: ‘Ross’ speech was so incredibly moving and uplifting in equal measure….it was very much from the heart and he got teary at times’ a source told The Mirror 

Flowers spelling out Babs, The Dame and Saucy adorned her coffin, while a topless photo from her Carry On days was included in the order of service, accompanied by her quote: “That picture will follow me to the end”.

Mr Mitchell, who was married to Dame Barbara for 20 years, wrote below it: “Yep!!! Rest in peace my darling Bar, my love forever Scott xx.”

Famed for her infectious laugh and baring all in the Carry On films, the Shoreditch-born actress known as ‘Babs’ boasted a 66-year career in showbiz, first appearing on stage aged 13 before retiring four years ago aged 79.

As dementia took its toll, 4ft 10ins Dame Barbara was forced to stop playing fearsome landlady Peggy Mitchell on EastEnders.

Floral tributes: Flowers spelling out Babs, The Dame and Saucy adorned her coffin, while a topless photo from her Carry On days was included in the order of service, accompanied by her quote: “That picture will follow me to the end”

Mr Mitchell said on December 11 that his ‘best friend and soul mate’ passed away peacefully in a London care home at 8.35pm the night before. He had moved into her home a few days earlier to be by her side when she died.

Mr Mitchell has shared the order of service for her funeral because Covid restrictions have limited the number of mourners who can attend.

He said: ‘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.

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

Legend: The east London-born actress universally known as ‘Babs’, boasted a 66-year career in showbiz, first appearing on stage aged 13 before retiring four years ago aged 79


Attendees: Jane Moore, left, and David Walliams, right, were among the stars to attend the funeral of legendary actress Barbara Windsor 

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.

‘Barbara’s condolences page for Alzheimer’s Research UK has passed the £150,000 mark. Beyond anything we may have dreamed of.’

The service, which was also attended by Loose Women’s Jane Moore and EastEnders actor Jamie Borthwick, featured tributes from Kemp, Biggins and Dame Barbara’s former co-star Anna Karen.

Kind gesture: Mr Mitchell has shared the order of service for her funeral because Covid restrictions have limited the number of mourners who can attend

The order of service featured a collection of photos of Dame Barbara throughout her career and personal life, including on the set of EastEnders, with the Queen and on her Carry On films, as well as with her husband.

Dame Barbara’s recording of Sparrows Can’t Sing from her 1963 film of the same name was played as the recessional music.

The order of service finished with the famous topless photo of Dame Barbara from the film Carry On Camping, accompanied by her quote: ‘That picture will follow me to the end’.

Mitchell wrote below it: ‘Yep!!! Rest in peace my darling Bar, my love forever Scott xx.’

The couple have been widely praised for their work raising awareness for Alzheimer’s disease after the actress went public with her diagnosis in 2018.

Awareness: The couple have been widely praised for their work raising awareness for Alzheimer’s disease after the actress went public with her diagnosis in 2018

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