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Comic actress who blundered to success dies at 80

14 January 2018

"Goodbye to Bella Emberg".

Bella Emberg, the comic actress who found fame as Russ Abbot's sidekick, has died at the age of 80.

Emberg starred as Blunder Woman alongside the titular host of the show, who played the ill-fated superhero Cooperman.

She was "a woman of huge warmth and generosity", Abbot said.

"She was not only a great sport but a huge comedy talent".

She also appeared in Matt Lucas's dialogue-free sitcom Pompidou and said proudly that she'd been "lucky enough to work with three geniuses: Benny Hill, Mel Brooks and Matt Lucas".

Metro.co.uk has reached out to reps for Bella Emberg and Sky One for comment. He described Emberg, who appeared as Blunderwoman on The Russ Abbot Show, as a "huge comedy talent" and "a woman of vast warmth and generosity".

Tributes to Emberg have been published on social media since news of her death broke last night (January 12) - check out a selection below.

She had recently finished filming a new comedy for Sky One, called In the Long Run, and created by Idris Elba, star of Luther and The Wire. She was my leading lady throughout most of my career.

Russ Abbot has led the tributes today, saying: "It is with a heavy heart that I heard the news about Bella".

Chuckle, real name Paul Elliott, who performed in pantomime with Emberg, remembered her as "the funniest fairy ever", while EastEnders star Fergison said she was "lovable and always an inspiration". "Russ said he was looking for a fat woman who could keep a straight face", Emberg recalled "That was fine by me".

"A genuinely nice woman and, despite her fierce on-stage characterisations, a truly gentle soul".

She said: 'Blunderwoman saved my career - and I still view her as a complete blessing. I went for jobs and they'd say: "'We'd love to hire you but you're too well known with Russ"'. RIP the lovely Bella Emberg.

Comic actress who blundered to success dies at 80