June Brown has revealed she is beginning to go blind.
The EastEnders icon – who has played Dot Cotton on the BBC soap for more than 30 years – has opened up about losing her eyesight.
And the 92-year-old explained she is struggling to be social because of issues with her vision, relying on Amazon’s Alexa for help reading newspapers.
‘I’ve got very poor sight. I’ve got extra lenses inside my eyes to try and help me read better,’ she said. ‘They help with my peripheral vision, but I’ve got no central vision at all. I haven’t driven for years and I can’t really go out socially due to my eyesight.’
June has suffered from macular degeneration – an age-related condition affecting the central visual field and could result in blurred or no vision – for the past 10 years.
Despite undergoing an operation to fit extra lenses in her eyes two years ago, they haven’t helped as she’d hoped.
As a result of her poor vision, she admitted she no longer attends award shows because she can’t ‘recognise people’ and doesn’t want them to think she’s being rude.
‘I never go to soap awards or suchlike now. I don’t recognise people that I know and they would think I was snubbing them,’ she continued to the Mirror. ‘And I have got loads of fan letters that I haven’t been able to read or reply to since it all started.
‘I don’t like to just send cards and sign them, I have all different sorts I like to choose from personally. So if someone mentioned Ethel, Gretchen Franklin, I’d send them one with a picture of Dot and Ethel.
‘I used to be meticulous about that but now I’ve got nobody, really, to help me do it.’
The BBC star – who made her first appearance on Albert Square back in 1985 – added she wouldn’t wish her condition on anyone.
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