Linda Robson has insisted she’s not at war with Birds Of A Feather co-star Pauline Quirke, despite ongoing rumours of a cast feud.
Offering an explanation for the series coming to an end, she said: ‘She just doesn’t want to act anymore, she wants to concentrate on her academies. You have to respect her wishes.’
Shutting down those rumours: Linda Robson told Good Morning Britain presenters Kate Garraway and Adil Ray on Thursday that her and Pauline Quirke haven’t fallen out
Pauline declined to take part in the Christmas special of the ITV series, leaving just Linda and Lesley Joseph starring in it. In May, ITV announced that the series had been permanently axed
Speaking about the Christmas special, Linda said: ‘They asked us whether we’d like to do it and we said we’re happy to.It was a very good Christmas special.’
Adil joked with the TV personality, asking she would go solo, to which Linda responed: ‘I’m not sure if I could do Birds of Feather on my own!’
Back in the day: Linda and Pauline (on Birds Of A Feather back in 1998) were rumoured to have fallen out in February after she was involved in a tense face-off with fellow star Lesley Joseph
Back in February, it was claimed Pauline is no longer on amicable terms with Linda after she was involved in a tense face-off with fellow TV star Lesley Joseph outside TV studio toilets.
The Sun previously alleged the bust-up with Lesley could date back to 1997, when Pauline received a BAFTA nomination for her role in The Sculptress, and reportedly asked for a bigger salary for her Birds Of A Feather stint through her manager husband Steve Sheen.
The insider said: ‘Steve was not especially popular on set. He asked for more money, which he felt was valid after her Bafta nomination, so the women started to drift apart.
‘The sense now is that they will never repair their friendship. Linda does not believe they will ever speak again.’
‘You have to respect her wishes’: The Loose Women panelist said that Pauline just doesn’t want to act anymore and instead wants to focus on her academies
Pauline and Linda played sisters in the hit comedy, and as real-life childhood best friends appeared to be a perfect fit for the roles.
But the frequent on-screen bickering between their characters Sharon and Tracey Stubbs appears to have exploded into the actors’ real lives, prompting fears for the future of the long-running programme.
The Mail on Sunday first revealed that a seemingly irreparable rift has developed between Pauline and Linda, whose bond once helped cement their reputation as among the UK’s most popular double acts.
Insiders said there have been ‘real and tense issues’ which resulted in Pauline refusing to take part in the 30th anniversary show, which aired in 2019.
At the same time, Linda grew closer to co-star Lesley, who plays man-eating neighbour Dorien Green, and the pair decided not to ask Pauline to take part in 2020’s Christmas special.
Not going solo: The 63-year-old said she couldn’t do Birds Of A Feather on her own after Adil jokingly asked if she would
The fall-out marked an end to Pauline’s much-loved character of Sharon, whose recent absences have been explained by the character heading off on a cruise.
The trio shot to fame in 1989 when Birds Of A Feather began on BBC1. Following the lives of two sisters who move in together after their husbands are jailed for armed robbery, it ran for nine years.
It was later revived in 2014 on ITV by its original writers and creators Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran.
Back in the day: Lesley, Linda and Pauline shot to fame in 1989 when Birds Of A Feather began on BBC1 (pictured 2015)
Meanwhile, Linda recently joined Susan Calman in Southend-on-Sea for the series Grand Week By The Sea.
Susan, a travel-lover and Scottish comedian, has been making her way around the country to explore what different seaside resorts have to offer.
And Linda makes a guest-appearance in Thursday night’s episode, which is centred on Southend-on-Sea – home to the world’s largest pleasure pier.
She will be sharing her memories of the Essex seaside resort, joining Susan along the seafront.
One to watch: Meanwhile, Linda recently joined Susan Calman (pictured) in Southend-on-Sea for the series Grand Week By The Sea