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Best known for her role as Hilda Ogden in Coronation Street, she brilliantly portrayed a northern working class cleaner with a sharp tongue.
The world's favourite soap star Jean Alexander has died, age 90, just three days after her birthday.
The actress was best known for playing Hilda Ogden in Coronation Street from 1964 until her departure in 1987.
Her trademark classic pinny, rollers and hanging ciggy were unforgettable, and graced the cobbles for 23 years before going on the star in The Last Of The Summer Wine.
Picture | REX
Born in Liverpool, she started her working life as a library assistant and it was in 1949 that her acting career began. She made her debut in the police series Z-Cars. It's now 50 years since she stepped into Hilda's shoes and married window cleaner Stan.
She died peacefully in hospital on Friday, her niece said.
Alexander had been admitted to Southport hospital, Merseyside, for tests but was discharged after a couple of days and allowed to return to her nursing home, her niece Sonia Hearld said.
But on Tuesday she was readmitted to hospital, three days before her death.
"My aunt died sadly earlier today," Mrs Hearld, of Selby, North Yorkshire, said on Friday.
People have been paying their respects on twitter, remembering her greatest moments:
One of the greatest soap lines ever written. RIP Jean Alexander (11 October 1926 – 14 October 2016) pic.twitter.com/3fUEYpJToB— Dan The Man (@Dannythemann90) 15 October 2016
Only Fools and Horses actor John Challis said:
Goodbye to actress Jean Alexander,who created Hilda Ogden,one of the greatest television characters of all time.— John Challis (@BeingBoycie) October 15, 2016
Fellow Corrie actor Les Dennis said:
Stan-What's that smell?Hilda-Woman,Stanley,woman.— Les Dennis (@LesDennis) 15 October 2016
Goodbye to a true @itvcorrie great. You enriched all of our lives. RIP Jean Alexander.
Coronation Street director tributes some of the shows success to the late actress. He said:
RIP Jean Alexander. I never got to work with you but loved watching Stan & Hilda. Without your brilliance I'm not sure #corrie would here.— Duncan Foster (@duncanfo) 15 October 2016
Pop star Boy George also paid his respects:
"Some folk get in where castor oil can't" R.I.P Hilda Ogden, Jean Alexander. A great British character actress. https://t.co/bnqzqgKHm0— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) 14 October 2016
Jean Alexander later joined Last of the Summer Wine in 1988 as the junk shop owner Auntie Wainwright, a role she would play for 22 years.
But it was Hilda Ogden that remained the character she was best known for. In 2005 a TV Times poll voted her the nation's favourite soap character.
So in the spirit of her name , we'll continue sing Beautiful Dreamer while dusting our ornaments.