Windsor awarded by Newham university for contribution to arts

Actress Barbara Windsor. Picture: PA Images/Anwar Hussein

Actress Barbara Windsor. Picture: PA Images/Anwar Hussein - Credit: Anwar Hussein/EMPICS Entertainment

A much-loved British actress whose career spans seven decades will be awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of East London (UEL) next week.

Barbara Windsor was nominated by UEL’s School of Arts and Digital Industries for her outstanding contribution to the Arts over the years.

The household name, who was born in Shoreditch to a market trader and dressmaker in 1937, has always had strong associations with the East End.

Most recently she’s won plaudits for her portrayal of Peggy Mitchell in Eastenders, a role she’s played for 16 years which earned her a Lifetime Achievement Award at The British Soap Awards in 2009.

On being awarded the honorary doctorate she said: “This is a great honour for me because I have such a deep connection with the east end.

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“Not only was it the place I was born but it has played a huge part in my career and continues to inspire me.

“I am genuinely so moved to receive this and I know if my mother was alive today she would be so proud of me and say ‘that’s my girl!’”

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She was first spotted by a talent scout at the age of 13 while performing in a charity show, before making her professional stage debut in pantomime and then moving on to the West End stage in the musical Love from Judy.

Barbara has since appeared in numerous films and hundreds of TV shows and is particularly well known for her roles in the Carry On film series.

She will receive her Honorary Doctorate of Arts at 2.30pm, on Thursday, November 20, at indigo at The 02 Arena.

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