The BBC have reported that much loved actor John Bardon, known to all as EastEnders Jim Branning, has passed away at age 75. The soap star had been going through a period of ill health this long time after he suffered a stroke in 2007 and filmed his final scenes on the soap back in March 2011.

He joined the cast back in 1999 with his character giving us all great entertainment as he chased after Dot Branning for years, until she finally agreed to marry him, in one of the loveliest and understated proposals there ever was.

The show's press team just announced the news saying; "It is with great sadness that we report the death of much-loved actor John Bardon, who played Dot's husband, Jim Branning, from 1996 to 2011. He was 75."

"Everyone at EastEnders is absolutely heartbroken to learn that John has sadly passed away. His bravery, dignity and courage in battling against the devastating effects of his stroke were admired by all who had the privilege of working with him."

"Loved by us all, John was an exceptionally talented actor whose humour, mischievousness and brilliant performances made Jim Branning one of Walford's most loveable, memorable characters and we will miss John forever."

"Our love and deepest sympathies are extended to Enda, his truly wonderful wife, at this very sad time. May he now rest in peace."

June Brown, who plays Dot Branning on the soap, has also said; "I am so sorry that John has passed away but hope that he is now at peace after seven difficult years. I shall miss him very much as I loved him dearly. My thoughts are with his devoted wife Enda."


Tonight's episode of EastEnders will be dedicated to John.