Entertainment

EastEnders star Natalie Cassidy on ‘difficult time’ after June Brown’s death

The actress will next be seen fronting a new podcast with Gavin & Stacey star Joanna Page.

EastEnders star Natalie Cassidy on ‘difficult time’ after June Brown’s death
Natalie Cassidy EastEnders star Natalie Cassidy on ‘difficult time’ after June Brown’s death (Suzan Moore/PA)

Natalie Cassidy has spoken about the “difficult time” she faced following the death of EastEnders co-star June Brown.

The London-born actress, who first appeared as Sonia Fowler on the BBC soap opera in 1993, led the cast during the emotional funeral storyline of her on-screen grandmother Dot Branning – played by Brown.

It came after the real-life death of veteran actress Brown in April 2022 at the age of 95.

EastEnders actress June Brown as Dot Cotton
EastEnders EastEnders actress June Brown as Dot Cotton

“It was very, very difficult for me because obviously I’ve lost a dear friend,” Cassidy told The Mirror.

“She taught me a lot and we had a lot of laughs over the years. When she was 82 years old she’d be partying in a nightclub, and she was just so amazing.”

Cassidy said there was “a lot resting on my shoulders” during the funeral scenes, but said she thinks she did Brown “proud”.

Brown was perhaps EastEnders’ best-known star and her larger-than-life character was known for her devout Christian faith and hypochondria, as well as her cigarette addiction.

She won several awards for her portrayal of Dot, including a lifetime achievement honour at the 2005 British Soap Awards, and in December 2021 she was made an OBE for services to drama and to charity.

Cassidy will next be seen fronting a new podcast with Gavin & Stacey star Joanna Page, after the pair met last year on ITV’s Loose Women.

“We clicked immediately,” Welsh star Page said.

The pair are set to launch a new BBC Sounds podcast titled Off The Telly, as they discuss three or four shows each week.

It comes after Gavin & Stacey star Ruth Jones, who co-created the hit BBC sitcom with James Corden, denied rumours of another reunion.

Page said: “It’s all gone absolutely mad with those rumours and it’s so sweet and lovely that everybody still loves the show.

“But cross my heart, I honestly don’t know. I’d never ask Ruth (Jones) or James (Corden) if they’re planning on writing any more. That would look a bit sad, wouldn’t it?

“But would I do the show again? I’d absolutely jump at it. It was a fantastic job with a fabulous cast. We had a right laugh from start to finish. My children recently watched the first Christmas special which they loved.”

Latest Entertainment Videos