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Tributes pour in after death of Open All Hours and Come Outside actress Lynda Baron

"We have lost a leading light of our world."

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 8th March 2022

Tributes have been flooding in after the shock news that Lynda Baron has passed away yesterday at the age of 82.

The BAFTA award-winning, Urmston-born actress, comedian, and singer was probably best known for playing the role of Nurse Gladys Emmanuel in the iconic BBC sitcom Open All Hours between 1976-1985 starring opposite Sir David Jason and Ronnie Barker, and then again in the show’s sequel series Still Open All Hours from 2013-2016.

She also notably-played Auntie Mabel in the beloved CBeebies children’s TV show Come Outside from 1993-1997.

She had also appeared in the ITV sitcom Oh No, It’s Selwyn Froggitt, BBC soap EastEnders as Linda Clarke, the mother of Jane Beale, and made appearances in Doctor Who, Last Of The Summer Wine, and much-loved Mancunian favourite sitcom Dinner Ladies.

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Baron’s devastating death was announced in a statement shared by her agent of nearly 30 years, Donna French, yesterday: “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved client Lynda Baron [who] was a wonderful actress and a great friend.

“We have lost a leading light of our world.

“We extend our deepest condolences to her daughter Sarah, her son Morgan and all her family.”

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Since the shocking news broke, previous co-stars and fans have been taking to social media to share their heartfelt tributes and memories of Baron’s successful and celebrated career, and everything she achieved.

Emmerdale actress Lisa Riley paid tribute to Baron – who played her mother in the drama series Fat Friends, saying: “Each and everyday, I learnt so much from you, but mostly, we always laughed together and your energy will live on forever.”

Stockport-born actress Sally Lindsay wrote in tribute on Twitter: “I loved Lynda Baron. She was funny and clever and a joy to work with, and she once gifted me a pair of beautiful red shoes. This has made me very sad – RIP Lynda darling.”

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Actor Adil Ray OBE also paid a worthy tribute on Twitter: “Very sad to hear of the passing of Lynda Baron. Such a lovely lady and a giving, caring person on set. We were so honoured when she played a guest role in Citizen Khan. She was so supportive.

“Thoughts with Lynda’s friends and family,” he added.

Radcliffe-born actor John Partridge, who played Baron’s EastEnders character’s son, said: “Absolutely heartbroken… The showgirls showgirl. She was so very gracious, giving and a RIOT to boot. Night night Mum.”

The official Twitter accounts of EastEnders, CBeebies, and more have also paid tribute.

Fans have too been sharing memories of Baron in their hundreds on Twitter.

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One fan wrote: “Such sad news about Lynda Baron, an actress who was a comforting auntie to a generation of kids she never met.

“She had a quality when you watched her that made you feel like you knew her so well.”

Another said: “How sad to hear the passing of Lynda Baron, well known to us all as nurse Gladys Emmanuel in Open All Hours, and she was also Auntie Mabel with her lovely dog Pippin, in Come Outside – a lovely children’s program my daughter loved to bits when she was little.

“A beautiful figure and comfort from so many of our childhoods, rest in peace to Lynda Baron,” another fan said on Twitter.

In her earlier life, Baron trained at the Royal Academy of Dance, before pursuing a career in acting, comedy, and showbusiness.

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Baron was nominated for a BAFTA in 2011 for her role in The Road To Coronation Street on BBC Four – a one-off drama about the early days of the soap, in which she played actress Violet Carson, who portrayed Ena Sharples in the long-running series.

Her film credits also included 2020’s sports movie Dream Horse, Woody Allen’s 2006 romantic crime Scoop, and 2005’s Colour Me Kubrick.

Also an accomplished West End star, Baron featured in the musical Follies, and in the stage version of In Celebration alongside Orlando Bloom, and also appeared in numerous other theatre productions including An Inspector Calls, Stepping Out, and The Full Monty.

R.I.P Lynda.

Featured Image – BBC One (via Twitter)