Come Outside Aunt Mabel star Lynda Baron has passed away aged 82 as tributes are paid to the ‘national treasure’ and ‘childhood icon’ from fans and friends alike.
Her death comes just days after it was announced much-loved children’s author Shirley Hughes had died as fans reach out to share their memories.
The beloved TV star, who was watched by millions of children on BBC’s Come Outside programme where she played Auntie Mabel and featured alongside dog Pippin, as she encouraged youngsters to get into the great outdoors and join them for an adventure.
Her iconic aeroplane sometimes saw them visit places for an in-depth educational look at how things were made including how bread is made, where paper comes from, and a visit to a sewage treatment plant. Re-runs of the show are still being aired today on CBeebies channel as the show continues to be loved by all generations.
Confirming the news, Lynda’s agent Donna French said, “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved client Lynda Baron. She was a wonderful actress and a great friend. Her iconic roles of Nurse Gladys in Open All Hours and Aunt Mabel in Come Outside were loved by all generations.
“Renowned for her leading roles in West End musicals and dramatic productions alike, we have lost a leading light of our world. We extend our deepest condolences to her daughter Sarah, her son Morgan and all her family.”
And fans are saddened by the news. One fan wrote, “Rest in peace to Lynda Baron, a national treasure and childhood icon to millions 🕊💔 We will love Auntie Mabel and Pippin always”
Another fan put, “Such sad news about Lynda Baron, an actress who was a comforting auntie to a generation of kids she never met. She had a quality when you watched her that made you feel like you knew her so well 💗”
And a third fan added, “It’s a sad day for us 90s babies…R.I.P. Lynda Baron 💔 Auntie Mabel was auntie to ALL of us.. #ComeOutside #Pippin #LyndaBaron x”
Lynda Baron tributes also come from those lucky enough to have worked with her.
Former Coronation Street actress Sally Lyndsey wrote, “I loved Lynda Baron.She was funny and clever and a joy to work with and she once gifted me a pair of beautiful red shoes 👠.This has made me very sad. RIP Lynda darling x.”
John Partridge tweeted, “Absolutely heartbroken… The showgirls showgirl! She was so very gracious, giving and a RIOT to boot. Night night Mum. #RIP #LyndaBaron.”
And Emmerdale star Lisa Riley wrote, “GOD BLESS YOU LYNDA🙏🏻REST IN PEACE😇 you played my mum for four wonderful, memorable years in “Fat Friends”each & everyday, I learnt so much from you, but mostly we ALWAYS laughed together, your energy will live on FOREVER🙏🏻 #restinpeace #legend 😇💛 love ya xxx.”
Lynda also played well-loved Nurse Gladys Emmanuel in both Open All Hours and Still Open All Hours. The hit show about a Yorkshire corner shop, which starred Ronnie Barker and Sir David Jason, ran in the 1970s and 80s before being revived in 2013.
In BBC soap EastEnders, she played Linda Clarke, the mother of Jane Beale. She also appeared in Doctor Who, Last of the Summer Wine, Down To Earth, Dinner Ladies and Barbra Streisand’s 1983 film Yentl. Her last film was Dream Horse in 2020.
Lynda’s exact cause of death is yet to be confirmed.