Tributes to ‘inspirational’ and ‘passionate’ Lynda

The late Lynda Bellingham took part in a Memory Walk with pupils from Ansdell Primary School when she was on the Fylde coast performing in Calendar Girls - pictured with parents and pupils from the school, and (right) teaching assitant  Katie Mallalieu, who organised her visit

The late Lynda Bellingham took part in a Memory Walk with pupils from Ansdell Primary School when she was on the Fylde coast performing in Calendar Girls - pictured with parents and pupils from the school, and (right) teaching assitant Katie Mallalieu, who organised her visit

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The Fylde coast has paid its own tribute to “inspirational” actress and charity ambassador Lynda Bellingham.

The former Loose Women panellist died on Sunday in her husband’s arms. She was 66.

Lynda Bellingham during rehearsal for an Oxo TV advertisment which was screened in 1987

Lynda Bellingham during rehearsal for an Oxo TV advertisment which was screened in 1987

Lynda had fought colon cancer since July 2013, but in August announced she had stopped her treatment.

The star both entertained and educated people in Blackpool and Fylde when she visited the area in 2011 to appear in Calendar Girls at the Opera House.

During the run she took time to visit Ansdell Primary School to join pupils on a Memory Walk to raise money and awareness for Alzheimer’s Society, a charity for which she was an ambassador.

While her most notable acting role as a mother in the Oxo TV adverts meant little to the youngsters taking part, she lit up the room and inspired pupils, teachers at the Lansdowne Road school have said.

Teacher Michelle Thomas said: “Lynda came in and spoke to the whole school, passionately about the cause and was an inspiration to the pupils. She made them really understand what they were doing the walk for.

“She had a wonderful presence.

“We’re all very sad to hear of her death, our hearts go out to her family.”

Hundreds of well-wishers took to social networking sites to pay tribute to Lynda and pay their respects to her family.

Bispham-born actress and Dancing On Ice winner Hayley Tamaddon tweeted: “RIP Lynda Bellingham, a gorgeous lady I had the pleasure of meeting numerous times. Sending love to her family and the Loose Women team.”

And Blackpool singer and fellow Loose Women panellist Coleen Nolan tweeted: “LindaBellingham Sleep warm, sleep well my friend, give Bernie a hug from me.”