Joanna Lumley reveals she’s ‘heartbroken’ as she leads celebrity tributes alongside David Walliams and Julian Clary following shock.
Joanna Lumley has led the tributes to Dame June Whitfield who has passed away aged 93.
Joanna, 72, who starred as Patsy alongside June in the hit BBC comedy Absolutely Fabulous, told ITV News: ‘I am heartbroken to lose such a darling friend and shall never forget her sensational talent, humour and her generosity to us all who had the joy of working with her on Ab Fab.
‘She will always have a most special place in my heart.’David Walliams and Julian Clary are among the other British comedy legends to pay tribute to the star, who’s career endured eight decades.Walliams, 47, described the star as ‘always there and always brilliant’ in a touching tweet about her ‘incredible career’.
Comedian Julian Clary added he ‘adored’ the star, who was made a dame in the 2017 Birthday Honours for her services to drama and entertainment.Clary, who often worked with June said: ‘God bless. How I adored her.’
Comedian turned children’s author Walliams tweeted: ‘#JuneWhitfield ‘s incredible career in British comedy stretched all the way from ‘Hancock’s Half Hour’ to ‘Absolutely Fabulous’.
Adding a link to a clip from Absolutely Fabulous, he said: ‘She was always there, always being brilliant. Jennifer Saunders wrote June one of the funniest lines in television history…’Actress Julia Sawalha, who played Dame June’s straight-laced granddaughter Saffy in Absolutely Fabulous, said: ‘Thank you Dame June Whitfield, for teaching me my craft with such grace and dignity.
‘I always wanted you to know how in awe of you I was, however, you were always far too humble to accept my adoration.
‘You were a great source of inspiration to me. Bye-bye Gran.’And her Ab Fab co-star Helen Lederer tweeted: ‘To add to tributes – June Whitfield during #AbsolutelyFabulous – a wizz at the crossword , perfection with feed lines and kindness itself.’
Comedian Miranda Hart wrote: ‘So very sad. I once sent a letter to many actors as a budding (I mean desperate) comedy actor to ask for sponsorship for the Edinburgh Festival.
‘Dame June replied. Fifteen years later when I met her she had all my letters and the notes of the show she sponsored. I cried then too.’
Spice Girl Emma Bunton, who worked with June in the big screen adaption of Absolutely Fabulous said: ‘So sad this evening. Such an incredible lady with the warmest heart. I was so nervous working with her but she had a way of making you feel comfortable and special Thank you Dame June Whitfield’