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Natalie Cassidy gives insight into her friendship with late June Brown

Natalie Cassidy gives insight into her close friendship with late EastEnders co-star June Brown and credits star for helping to develop her acting skills

  • Natalie Cassidy has given an insight into her her close friendship with the late June Brown after the actress died at the age of 95 in April this year
  • Soap star Natalie, 39, has played Sonia Fowler in EastEnders since 1993, starring alongside June, who portrayed Dot Cotton, for decades
  • Before June died at her home in Surrey in April this year with her family by her side, she and Natalie spent hours together both on and off the BBC set 

Natalie Cassidy has given an insight into her her close friendship with the late June Brown after the actress died at the age of 95 in April this year.

Soap star Natalie, 39, has played Sonia Fowler in EastEnders since 1993, starring alongside June, who portrayed Dot Cotton, for decades. 

Before June died at her home in Surrey in April this year with her family by her side, she and Natalie spent hours together both on and off the BBC set.

Strong bond: Natalie Cassidy, 39, has given an insight into her her close friendship with the late June Brown after the actress died at the age of 95 in April this year (Natalie pictured at the funeral of June’s character Dot in EastEnders scenes yet to air)

Natalie told the Daily Star: ‘We had such fun. We went on holiday together. She used to stay at my flat. We got a curry and a bottle of wine and read our lines.

‘I’m a bit of an old soul. Instead of going out with the youngsters I was working with, I would always spend my time with June.

‘We used to go for lunch in the canteen. We would chat away. And I spent hours and hours with June in her dressing room, chatting about life.’

Co-stars: Soap star Natalie has played Sonia Fowler in EastEnders since 1993, starring alongside June, who portrayed Dot Cotton (pictured), for decades (June seen as Dot in 1997)

Co-stars: Soap star Natalie has played Sonia Fowler in EastEnders since 1993, starring alongside June, who portrayed Dot Cotton (pictured), for decades (June seen as Dot in 1997)

Natalie went on to praise June for helping her develop her acting skills over the years, saying she was grateful ‘to have had training from the best’.

June’s character Dot was written out of the soap after the star’s death, with a number of names returning to Albert Square for Dot’s funeral which is to air in the coming weeks.  

Among those returning is Jacqueline Jossa, who played Dot’s grand-daughter Lauren Branning and said it was a ‘no-brainer’ to return, and Tom Watt, who portrayed George ‘Lofty’ Holloway.

Good friends: In addition to the personal time they shared together, Natalie said June helped her develop her acting skills, saying she was grateful 'to have had training from the best' (Natalie pictured in October)

Good friends: In addition to the personal time they shared together, Natalie said June helped her develop her acting skills, saying she was grateful ‘to have had training from the best’ (Natalie pictured in October)

While completing the line-up of returning actors are Colin Russell (Lord Michael Cashman CBE), Barry Clark (Gary Hailes) , Mary ‘the punk’ Smith (Linda Davidson) and Disa O’Brien (Jan Graveson).

The special episode, which is extended to 37 minutes and reportedly features a slightly altered theme tune, airs on Monday December 12.

Actress Milly Zero, who plays Dot’s granddaugher Dotty, previously told the publication that while filming the funeral scenes the cast cried ‘real tears’ as they came together for the incredible episode.  

She said: ‘It was such an emotional day. We cried real tears during filming because it really is such a beautiful tribute to her. There’s elements of the episode that will make you laugh.

‘June was always a bit mischievous on set and would often change the words of the script but that was just her.

‘She would have loved seeing us all come together for the episode. I feel so proud to play her granddaughter it really is a dream role. We will always miss her.’

Farewell: June died at her home in Surrey in April this year with her family by her side, with the actress first joining EastEnders as Dot in 1985

Farewell: June died at her home in Surrey in April this year with her family by her side, with the actress first joining EastEnders as Dot in 1985

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk



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