16/02/2017 06:35 GMT | Updated 16/02/2017 10:06 GMT

13 Times June Brown Was Even More Legendary Than EastEnders' Dot Cotton

'Ooh, I've got one of me heads coming on.'

Having played EastEnders’ Dot Cotton for over 30 years, June Brown is responsible for one of the most iconic soap characters of all time. 

However, the woman behind the chain-smoking, gossip-mongering launderette worker is even more legendary.

As June celebrates her 90th (!) birthday, here’s a list of reasons proving why that’s the case...

1. She revealed she once went skinny-dipping with Letitia Dean (aka Sharon from ‘EastEnders’) in Greece

”Why are you so interested in her? Why aren’t you interested in me?”

2. Of course, she’s no stranger to getting her kit off, having stripped naked on stage in ‘Calendar Girls’


3. Then there was also her shot in the official ‘EastEnders’ calendar a few years back


Oooh, I say. 

4. In fact, she’s actually led rather a racy life

I joined the Wrens at 18 and that gave me a tremendous sense of liberation. As you couldn’t be sure what tomorrow might bring, you felt like making the most of today. If I’d stayed at home I’d have married as a virgin. But, in the heady post-war years and afterwards when I was a drama student at the Old Vic, I fell in love all the time.June Brown

5. There were so many highlights of her appearance alongside Lady Gaga on ‘The Graham Norton Show’ 

- She was determined to flash more flesh than Gaga

- She puffed on an electronic fag and downed loads of red win throughout


- She revealed the inspiration behind her unique sense of style

- And contemplated plastic surgery

- She propositioned Graham Norton 

- And had some words of wisdom for Gaga

6. At 83, she was the oldest person to ever take to the ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ floor on the 2010 Christmas Special


Sadly there is no footage of her routine on YouTube. Trust us, we’ve hunted high and low. 

7. Here she is singing ‘Little Donkey’ on a TV show in 1998

We have no idea why this exists, but we’re so glad it does. 

8. She made soap history by becoming the first ever soap star to be given a single-hander episode

She received a Bafta nomination for Best Actress as a result of the episode, which focused on her recording a voice message for her husband Jim, who was in a care home following a stroke. 

9. When she failed to win the Bafta, she made no secret of how disappointed she was

I would’ve liked it, yes. I would’ve felt it had crowned my acting in a way, made it sound worthwhile, I think.June Brown

10. She and Gretchin Franklin had an amazing off-screen partnership, as well as their one on screen

Ultimate friendship goals.

11. This is how she celebrated her double win at the British Soap Awards in 2005


She was literally all of us if we won a big award.

12. Here she is having it large with Rizzle Kicks

We’re desperate to know how this meeting happened. 

13. And despite turning 90, June has no plans to slow down any time soon

As long as I am capable of ­working, and can learn lines and move around, I will carry on. I’d be utterly bored if I stopped.June Brown
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