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Brookside actress and C4 Home Free star Anna Norbury has died age 26, reveals co-star Michael Starke

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BROOKSIDE and Home Free star Anna Norbury has died aged 26.

The actress, who played Alice Farnham in the Merseyside soap from 1994 to 1997, died suddenly on September 7.

Anna’s former Brookside co-star Michael Starke, who played Thomas ‘Sinbad’ Sweeney, paid tribute on Twitter, writing: “Today we say farewell to Anna Norbury.

“She was ‘Baby Alice Farnham’ in Brookside. She was one of the most treasured and beautiful young cast members. Love and strength to her wonderful family.”

The 26-year-old featured in Channel 4’s Home Free with her fiancé Joe, a documentary following people with disabilities as they moved into supported living apartments in the pursuit of independence.

Anna’s aunt Katharine also spoke fondly of her niece on social media, telling her followers: “Anna Kate Norbury who won the hearts of millions as Alice Farnham in Brookside and more recently in ⁦⁦the ⁦Channel 4 documentary Home Free with her boyfriend Joe, with whom she was on the cusp of beginning independent living has died aged 26. Dearly dearly dearly loved.”

The late star’s heartbroken mum Maria placed an obituary in the Telegraph following Anna’s death.

Anna Kate Norbury who won the hearts of millions as Alice Farnham in Brookside and more recently in ⁦⁦the ⁦Channel 4 documentary Home Free with her boyfriend Joe, with whom she was on the cusp of beginning independent living has died aged 26. Dearly dearly dearly loved. pic.twitter.com/SNVo7cTBJS

Today we say farewell to Anna Norbury. She was ‘Baby Alice Farnham’ in Brookside. She was one of the most treasured and beautiful young cast members. Love and strength to her wonderful family. ❤️💙🌈

She wrote: “She will be remembered for her warmth, her wit, her clarity, her forthrightness, and above all for her beautiful and innocent humanity.

“Anna may have been born with special needs, but she was so special and unique in herself that we were the ones who needed her. 

“Her smile shone a bright light into the world of everyone who was lucky enough to meet her. Our loss is greater than we can ever say.”

Soap fans will fondly remember Anna’s young character shining a light on Down Syndrome during her time on Brookside.

The Farnham family’s time on the soap was full of domestic drama as dad Max was caught between ex Susannah and wife Patricia.

Eventually Patricia fled to France with children Alice and Thomas, before Max was rocked by tragedy when Anna’s on-screen half-siblings Matthew and Emily died in a tragic car crash.

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