Former Coronation Street actress Jean Fergusson has passed away at the age of 74, her agent confirmed on Friday. The actress was perhaps best known for her role in Last of the Summer Wine, in which she portrayed opinionated Marina who had a secret romance with married Howard for 25 years. Jean appeared in 216 episodes of the show from 1985 until it was discontinued in 2010. She also appeared several times in Coronation Street, starring as Helen Ashcroft, the sister-in-law of Dr Lowther, in 1987 and as Gary Mallett's mother Mrs Mallett in 1999. She returned to the soap in 2010 to play the part of Dorothy Hoyle until 2011. Jean also had a theatre career and was nominated for an Olivier Award in 1998 for playing British comic, actress and music hall performer Hylda Baker.
Tributes have been pouring in online from her friends and former colleagues since the sad news of her death broke. Allo 'Allo star Vicki Michelle shared a picture of them together on Twitter and said: "Shocked & saddened to hear Jean Fergusson has passed Lovely lady, fabulous actress. Saw her Sunday at #SuPollard’s birthday, said she wasn’t feeling well. @benstockbiz and I planned to take her out next week. Can’t believe she’s gone #LastoftheSummerWine #SheKnowsYouKnow #Corrie."
Jean appeared on Corrie several times as different characters over the years
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Actor Mike Grady, who also appeared in Last of the Summer Wine, paid a tribute to the actress, sharing a heartfelt picture on Twitter. He tweeted: "Our beloved colleague of many years, Jean Fergusson has died. We have lost a generous storyteller who reduced audiences to good old fashioned, uncontrollable, honest laughter. Behind the blonde wig and glitzy makeup she was very beautiful, skilled and of great ability."
Jean's cause of death is not yet known.
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