June Brown smoking
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EastEnders legend June Brown ordered NOT to quit over fears she’ll keel over

June has smoked 20 a day for 70 years

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EastEnders star June Brown has been ordered to keep smoking over fears giving up after 70 years would cause her to keel over through shock.

The actress, 93, has smoked 20 a day ever since she was in her 20s.

Dot Cotton BBC
June played chain-smoking Dot for 30 years (Credit: BBC)

Now her on-screen son and close friend John Altman has revealed doctors have told her not to try to quit.

He told The Sun: “She is still smoking, unfortunately, but the doctors have told her not to stop now. She loves her ciggies. She smokes at least 10 a day.”

Soap star June shocked fans earlier this year when she announced she had quit EastEnders.

Read more: EastEnders SPOILERS: Stacey gets shocking news

Speaking on a podcast, June read out a self-penned poem announcing her decision to leave Dot behind.

The actress has been a regular star on the soap since just after it began in 1985 and stayed consistently except for a break between 1993 and 1997.

She said: “I don’t want a retainer for EastEnders, I’ve left. I’ve left for good.

“I’ve sent her off to Ireland where she’ll stay, I’ve left EastEnders. I did make up a limerick. It’s a bit dirty.

“I went back to do a good story. Alas and alack, when I got back it had gone up in smoke. I got a small part, a very small part.

“And that ended up as a big wet fart. Alas and alack, I will never go back.”

June Brown quit EastEnders over disappointment with storylines

John later revealed June had quit over her disappointment with storylines.

He recently exclusively told ED!: “In all honesty, I think June wouldn’t mind me saying, she wasn’t happy with the storylines.

“She wasn’t doing enough and that was about it really. She wasn’t happy with the storylines – no other reason.”

June didn’t quit over a new actress playing Dotty (Credit: BBC)

John also insisted June didn’t quit over the recasting of her on-screen daughter Dotty Cotton.

“She wasn’t pleased with the recasting of Dotty but that wasn’t the reason she left,” he said.

“I wish people would get it right sometimes. It’s highly irritating.

Read more: EastEnders SPOILERS: Denise reveals Phil’s identity to Ellie

“She wasn’t pleased and nor was I because the former actress, Molly Conlin, was quite capable of playing that part. She’s a lovely looking girl as well.

“I’ve no idea on God’s earth why they recast it. I’ve no idea what goes on in their brains up there sometimes. She’s done very well the new actress [Milly Zero], but why do it? ”

“It’s recast mania up there. So many actors have changed and they never look the same,” he added.

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