Former Crouch End and Muswell Hill resident Lynda Bellingham dies after losing cancer fight
Actress and Loose Women presenter Lynda Bellingham, who was battling cancer, died yesterday in her husband’s arms, her agent has confirmed.
The 66-year-old star, who lived in Muswell Hill and Crouch End for many years, was diagnosed with colon cancer in July last year.
The actress, well-known for her role as the “Oxo mum” in a series of TV adverts, revealed last month that she decided to end chemotherapy treatment on August 13 to limit the amount of suffering her family would witness.
Her death comes just days after she gave an emotional last interview on Loose Women, which is due to be screened on Wednesday.
In a statement on behalf of Ms Bellingham’s family, her agent, Sue Latimer, said: “Lynda died peacefully in her husband’s arms yesterday evening at a London hospital.
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“Her family, to whom she was devoted, would like to thank the nurses and staff for their tremendous care and support.
“As an actor, writer and presenter, Lynda was a consummate professional to the very end.
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“Those of us privileged to have known her personally will miss the entertaining, life enhancing, true and honest friend that blessed our lives.”
Ms Bellingham, a former ambassador of the Alzheimer’s Association, had heavily criticised a planned closure of dementia day care centres, drop-in centres and residential care homes by Haringey Council in 2011.
She was made an OBE in this year’s New Year’s Honours List for her charitable work.
Ms Bellingham’s decision to end her treatment was revealed in a newspaper serialisation of her forthcoming autobiography.
She had said she would like to see one last Christmas.
The actress wrote: “The decision to give up chemo was a huge relief because I took back some control of myself. It’s there on the table if I want it.
“I don’t want the boys or my husband to see me die a little sad old lady. I want to go out there as I am.”
She said she wanted her autobiography to be “uplifting”, adding: “I wrote the book for everybody out there.
“It’s not supposed to be an embarrassing account of me having terminal cancer.
“I wanted to write it for everybody who is given that curveball and say of course there are no answers but, if you can, take it and make it positive and talk about dying.
“If two people read this book and think ‘Actually, that’s how I feel and I’m not on my own’, then I’ll have done something half decent.”
Ms Bellingham’s acting career saw her star in dramas such as At Home With The Braithwaites and The Bill.
Actor Simon Pegg, who starred with the actress in 1990s TV show Faith In The Future, said: “Lynda Bellingham, a gorgeous, brassy, funny, generous, talented human being. My first TV mother figure and a treasured friend.”