Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 1 August 2015

Wendy Richard's final TV moments reveal her cancer fight

Published 19/03/2009 | 09:11

Wendy Richard in a frame from a fly-on-the-wall-documentary about her final days as she battles cancer
Wendy Richard in a frame from a fly-on-the-wall-documentary about her final days as she battles cancer
Wendy Richard in a frame from a fly-on-the-wall-documentary about her final days as she battles cancer
Wendy Richard in a frame from a fly-on-the-wall-documentary about her final days as she battles cancer
Wendy Richard in a frame from a fly-on-the-wall-documentary about her final days as she battles cancer
Wendy Richard
Letitia Dean (Left) and June Brown arrive for the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church
Middlesbrough-born Wendy Richard, 26, who plays Maudie, the sexy newly-wed factory girl in the London Weekend Television series "Both Ends Meet".
Former EastEnders star Wendy Richard
Letitia Dean arrives for the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Todd Carty attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Michelle Collins arrives for the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Patsy Palmer attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Kara Tointon attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
David Spinx attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Dean Gaffney attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Barbara Windsor attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Todd Carty (left) attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Pallbearers carry the coffin of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Natalie Cassidy (left) and Letitia Dean attend the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Frank Thornton attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
June Brown attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Fern Britton attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Barbara Windsor leaves St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London, following the funeral of Wendy Richard
Ian Lavender attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Michelle Collins attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Linda Davidson attends the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Todd Carty helps carry the coffin of Wendy Richard from St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London
Gary Bushell arrives for the funeral of actress Wendy Richard at St Mary's Church, Marylebone High Street on March 09, 2009 in London, England.
Lacey Turner leaves the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London.
Frank Thornton arrives for the funeral of actress Wendy Richard at St Mary's Church, Marylebone High Street on March 09, 2009 in London, England.
June Brown leaves the funeral of Wendy Richard at St Marylebone Parish Church, Marylebone Road in central London

Eastenders star Wendy Richard, who lost her fight with cancer last month, is to make her final TV appearance in a moving documentary charting her battle with the disease.



The 65-year-old actress made the programme, Wendy Richard: To Tell You The Truth, in a bid to dispel the fear of chemotherapy and encourage others to have the potentially life-saving treatment.

Viewers will see her receiving treatment and declaring: “One thing you must do is not give up, you must remain positive. Don’t give up — it’s not the British way of doing things.”

She added: “I want to show people that chemotherapy is not a death sentence — it is medicine and it saves lives.

“You must never give in — you have to fight. I’m not going to feel sorry for myself, there are thousands of people across the country going through what I am."

Richard, who featured in the long-running BBC soap as Pauline Fowler for 21 years, had fought to overcome cancer twice previously, first in 1996 and again in 2002.

After lengthy treatment her cancer went into remission but last year an aggressive form of the disease returned and in October she revealed her condition was terminal.

She died last month at the Harley Street Clinic in London with her Ulster-born husband, John Burns, by her side.

The documentary, to be shown on BBC1 at 8pm tonight, shows her joined by former EastEnders co-stars James Alexandrou and Natalie Cassidy on the night before she picked up scan results in December.

Speaking of his wife’s death, Mr Burns (45) said: “Wendy and I were looking forward to a holiday and just a few hours before she passed away she was sitting up chatting.

“I went to walk Lily our dog and when I came back they asked me to come quick and said I had to say my goodbyes. She passed away peacefully as I held her hand.”

Wendy Richard: To Tell You The Truth is on BBC1 tonight at 8pm

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