Dame Barbara Windsor moves into nursing home as Alzheimer’s worsens

Aug 01, 2020
The Carry On icon was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2014. Source: Getty.

Dame Barbara Windsor has moved into a residential aged care facility in the UK, as the Carry On star continues to battle advancing Alzheimer’s disease.

Her devoted husband Scott made the difficult decision on the advice of Barbara’s neurologist, and Barbara moved into a full-time residential nursing home around two weeks ago. He shared the news with British tabloid The Sun, and admitted that he hoped this day would never come.

It’s always been my biggest fear, that one day I would have to take her somewhere and she’d be thinking, ‘Why would he do this to me?’”, he said. “That fear has become a reality. It’s something I never wanted.”

Scott, who has been married to the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang star for 20 years, also told the publication that he is struggling to come to terms with how silent their marital home is now, as it’s no longer filled with health workers and carers.

He added: “I have been used to hustle and bustle in this little space, then suddenly, silence … all you can hear are your thoughts, and that’s not always healthy,” he says, sitting on the sofa where Barbara watched TV.

“I feel I’m on an emotional rollercoaster. I walk around, trying to keep busy, then burst in to tears. It feels like a bereavement.

Barbara – who is perhaps best known for playing no-nonsense pub landlady Peggy Mitchell in Eastenders – was first diagnosed with the progressive brain disorder in 2014. And Scott has been open about his wife’s diagnosis, regularly sharing updates on her condition.

In October 2018, he revealed his devastation after Barbara forgot who he was for the first time. He told The Sun at the time: “About two weeks ago, she’d had a bath and I was drying her back, when suddenly she looked at me with almost fearful apprehension.

“She said, ‘Who are you? What are you doing here?’ and I replied, ‘It’s me Bar, it’s Scott, your husband’. She snapped out of it almost instantly but then became very ­distressed and cried, ‘Oh Scott, it’s my memory, I’m so sorry’.”

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