22 Apr 2023, 09:54
22 Apr 2023, 09:56
Barbara Windsor, EastEnders, Jake Wood, Max Branning
EastEnders star Jake Wood has shared some sad news – he’s no longer able to run the London Marathon, in memory of his friend, the late Barbara Windsor.
The ex-EastEnders actor met Barbara while playing Max Branning on the BBC soap, and the pair were friends ever since. Barbara sadly died in 2020 from dementia.
Barbara Windsor was diagnosed with Alzeimer’s in 2014 (Credit: Splash News)
Jake Wood pulls out of marathon
But Jake shared the news last night (April 21) that he sadly had to pull out due to health reasons.
I will be unable to run the London Marathon Sunday due to medical advice.
Posting on Instagram, Jake, 50, explained he is suffering from a ‘bad chest infection’. Looking visibly upset, Jake revealed he was “gutted”, adding he was given “medical advice”. He was set to run with Barbara’s widower Scott Mitchell. Other EastEnders stars will still run, including Lacey Turner, Adam Woodyatt and Natalie Cassidy.
View this post on Instagram
Jake wrote: “I have had to take the decision to pull out of this year’s @londonmarathon due to a chest infection. I am so sad to miss the day running with my @babsarmy team. Thank you to everyone who has supported me thus far and for all your donations, which will all go to @alzheimersresearchuk in memory of our friend Barbara Windsor. Donation page is still open, follow the link in my bio if you would like to donate and support my friends running on Sunday.”
In the video, Jake explained further: “I’ve come on here to give some very sad news, personal news. I will be unable to run the London Marathon Sunday due to medical advice. I’ve got a very bad chest infection. I’m gutted.”
Friends give support
And Jake’s friends rushed to the comments to offer their messages of support.
Barbara’s partner Scott wrote: “Jake you have been a warrior all through training! We are so sorry to lose you from the team!! Your health comes first but just gutted for you! Thanks for all you have done thus far! Love you mate!”
Jake Wood played Max Branning until 2021 (Credit: Splash News)
Meanwhile, Adam Woodyatt, who played Ian Beale for almost 40 years, until 2022, replied: “Gutted for you Bud. Tough decision but the right one.”
“Gutted for you hun,” Jo Joyner, who played Jake’s on-screen wife Tanya, wrote. “I know how hard you’ve all worked for it. But best you get well again xx.”
You can donate to Jake’s fundraising page here.
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