emma barton

Strictly's Emma Barton pays touching tribute to late EastEnders co-star

Nicky Henson played Honey Mitchell's dad Jack Edwards

Sharnaz Shahid

EastEnders and Strictly Come Dancing star Emma Barton has paid tribute to her former co-star and on-screen dad Nicky Henson following the news of his death. Nicky, who played Honey Mitchell's father Jack Edwards, passed away at the age of 74 nearly 20 years after he was diagnosed with cancer. "Truly devastated to hear about the passing of my beautiful TV Dad," Emma wrote in a statement. "A wonderfully talented actor, a true gentleman, not forgetting his terrifically wicked sense of humour. Thinking of his family."

She later added: "Rest in peace my darling Nicky." Another EastEnders co-star, Stuart Antony, tweeted: "RIP the wonderful Nicky Henson - The man with million stories all of them funny. A true gent x." Broadcaster Gyles Brandreth wrote: "Sad news. Nicky Henson was the just the loveliest & most brilliant guy, an actor of such energy & style. He’s been ill for too long & was so courageous. RIP."

READ: Emma Barton shares details of her weirdest Strictly Come Dancing injury

On Monday, Nicky's friend Ian Oglivy confirmed the sad news on Facebook in a message, which read: "After an illness which started twenty years ago, and which was born with great fortitude and good humour, my oldest and dearest friend, my mate Nicky Henson, has gone." A statement from the actor's family said: "Nicky Henson has died after a long disagreement with cancer."

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Nicky also starred in Fawlty Towers, A Touch of Frost, Downton Abbey and Minder. In an interview last year, the late actor opened up about his battle with cancer, saying: "For the last 18 years, I've regarded myself as 'being in extra time', which I never expected to have, so I'm very thankful for it."

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