Actress June Whitfield, known to UK audiences as Kenneth Connor’s prudish wife in Carry On Abroad has died at the age of 93 on 28 December 2018.
Born in the South London district of Streatham in 1925, Whitfield made her first foray into the world of entertainment with actor Wilfred Pickles in 1946 on the radio. As an West End actress, she made her television debut in the musical revue The Passing Show.
Throughout the 1950’s, Whitfield made several appearances on popular television programmes, including Dixon Of Dock Green and The Arthur Askey Show. But it was in 1959 when she made her first of four roles in the long running Carry On series with Carry On Nurse.
Going from strength to strength, Whitfield was a familiar face on film and TV, guest starring on The Morecambe and Wise Show, Bless This House and what would arguably be her most famous role, as June in Terry and June with erstwhile Carry On member Terry Scott.
To more contemporary audiences, she may be best known as the mother of Edina “Eddie” Monsoon; Jennifer Saunders’ character in Absolutely Fabulous and its spin off movie.
Married to surveyor Timothy Aitchison in 1955, the pair had one of the longest marriages in entertainment until his death in 2001. Together, they had a daughter; the actress, Suzy Atchison.
Whitfield was honoured three times in the Queen’s Birthday Honours with an OBE in 1985, a CBE in 1998 and a DBE in 2017 making her a Dame.
In December the same year, she opened up about living in a care home where she remained until her passing.
Dame June Whitfield leaves behind a much celebrated body of work.