Why Barbara Windsor's legendary Peggy Mitchell was killed off

Barbara Windsor is suffering from Alzheimer's disease

Windsor, who was made a Dame in 2015 for services to drama, is famous for her roles in nine Carry On films and as pub landlord Peggy Mitchell in EastEnders.

"Stigma around dementia still exists, and many people are facing it in the shadows".

Urging other families to have open conversation about dementia, he added: "People are not only scared of Alzheimer's, they're scared of being labelled, I think".

In the interview Mr Mitchell said he had first noticed symptoms of the condition in 2009, just before Windsor left EastEnders for the first time when she began having difficulty learning her lines.

In a heartbreaking interview with The Sun, husband Scott Mitchell revealed how his wife of 18 years began to cry in the neurologist's office when - after hours of mental agility tests - they were given the bad news on April 22 in 2014.

In the article written by Loose Women's Jane Moore Scott told of Barbara's struggle with the disease.

"Since her 80th birthday last August, a definite continual confusion has set in, so it's becoming a lot more hard for us to hide", he told the newspaper.

Ruth also said that she thought it was "wonderful" that Barbara's husband Scott had chose to speak so openly about Barbara's condition.

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Tim Parry, director of Alzheimer's Research UK, also praised the decision to go public.

This comes after Dame Barbara's husband, Scott Mitchell, chose to speak out about his wife's condition, to "set the record straight".

"I don't want it to come across that she's sitting there unable to communicate, because she's not".

Repetition is a common early symptom which is triggered by memory loss. Looking back, I was more anxious about myself than I was about her.

Writing on Twitter he said: 'Very proud of Scott and Barbara for speaking openly about Barbara's diagnosis.

"It was a release but he felt so guilty because he felt he couldn't protect her any more".

Pam St Clement, who starred opposite Dame Barbara in EastEnders for many years as Pat Butcher, said that she has known her former co-star has Alzheimer's since the diagnosis around four years ago. Whenever they went out, the public were like moths to a flame with Barbara and she loves them. "I hope that doesn't sound unusual but when you know something is wrong and you've been looking into it and wondering and wondering 'why are they behaving like this?'. when we got that diagnosis as a family, there was an element of relief, [of] 'oh, that's why.' Then we understood it".

His associates included the gangster Reggie Kray and his brother Charles, with whom Dame Barbara had relationships.

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