The late Lynda Bellingham poignantly described the details of the Christmas she would never see during her final TV interview.
The actress had hoped for one more festive season after choosing to end treatment for her cancer, but died at the weekend just days after she had made public her decision.
In the interview for Loose Women – a show for which she had been a regular panellist for a number of years – she assured her friends and colleagues all would be ‘fine’ and said she longed to be remembered for her honesty.
Lynda died in the arms of her husband Michael Pattemore at the age of 66 after her cancer spread from her colon to other parts of her body. She recorded her last interview earlier this month and told how she was ‘obsessed’ with Christmas and was determined to see one more.
“Bloody right I am! I am. I AM,” she insisted, during the interview with Janet Street Porter and Coleen Nolan in front of a studio audience which included her husband.
“We’re going to go to the hotel and have the meal, but just my little bit of control – we’re going home for pudding and presents, it’s exciting.
“My only problem is getting the presents – my sister Jean has been absolutely amazing and I keep sending him (Michael) out for bizarre things.”
Lynda explained her desire for a real Christmas tree, although her husband was not a fan.
“He’s spent years trying to put me off a real tree and we’re very lucky as we live in a converted psychiatric hospital which has got a really tall ceiling. All I’ve ever wanted is a real tree.
“‘No don’t make me sweep up the pine needles, oh my goodness’,” she joked, mimicking Michael.
“Hey I’m getting one, I’m getting a real tree. He’ll just have to struggle out of the window with it afterwards, that’s fine.”
Lynda was given a standing ovation as she entered the studio and went on to say how she wished to be remembered: “Just as an honest person. Honesty. We’ve been through this as Loose Women – you can’t do Loose Women unless you’re honest.
“You can’t hide anything, it really is honest when we answer questions. That’s why I felt I could write about it and people would trust.
“Trust is a huge thing. Not just as an actor, not just as a lover, not just as a wife, that trust thing. Just to say you could trust her. As you know I wanted to win an Oscar at 75 for Best Newcomer! Sadly that’s gone out of the window.”
Coleen cried at the end of the interview, but Lynda consoled her, saying: “Don’t cry. It’s going to be fine, it will be fine – don’t worry.”
The interview features on today’s (October 22) edition of Loose Women which will be screened at 12.30pm.