[ENT] Victoria Wood’s co-star Duncan Preston says he dreams about meeting her again

Victoria Wood’s co-star and pal Duncan Preston has revealed how he still shares cups of tea with the late star – in his dreams.

More than four years on from her ­untimely death from cancer at 62, the ­veteran actor says her memory is still strong.

Duncan, 74, who starred in Victoria’s shows such as Dinnerladies and Acorn Antiques, said: “I have dreams about her. Like we are having a cup of tea or going to the pub like we used to when we lived near each other.

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“It was her son Henry who rang to tell me she’d died. I hadn’t known she’d been ill and I was shocked to the core. I thought ‘F*** me, what a loss!’”

Duncan, who can still barely believe she’s gone, first met Victoria in 1981 when he landed the lead role in her TV play Happy Since I Met You, opposite her friend Julie Walters.

Duncan, 74, (far left) who starred in Victoria’s shows such as Dinnerladies

Duncan and Julie dated for two years, but their working ­relationship with Victoria lasted several decades, including the BBC hits Wood And Walters and As Seen On TV.

“Victoria put me on the map, for sure, and I’ll always be grateful,” says Duncan, who has also had roles in Harry Enfield

And Chums and Surgical Spirit, plus soaps EastEnders, Coronation Street and Emmerdale.

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But Victoria wasn’t always easy to work with. “She just liked it doing her way,” he recalls now. “You weren’t allowed to ad lib – it’d just get cut.

Duncan and Victoria’s working relationship lasted several decades

“She’d say, ‘I’ve written this… what do you think?’ I’d often think, ‘What’s funny about this?’ Then you’d read it through with the people in it and her genius was such that you then saw what was funny.”

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One sketch called Two Soups featuring Julie as a doddery waitress spilling food is expected to feature in a forthcoming BBC special called Victoria Wood’s Secret List.

“Victoria had a knack of seeing comedy in people and writing it,” says Duncan.

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Victoria and Duncan, at the aftershow party for An Audience With Victoria Wood in 1988

“A waitress like that served her in a cafe in Morecambe.”

They last teamed up for Acorn Antiques: The Musical! in London’s West End in 2005.

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“She wrote cards saying things like, “You’re so clever at stage work. I’d no idea,” he says.

“But you had to catch her in a good mood – you’d do something else and she’d say, ‘Oh, I don’t think much to that!’”

■Let’s Do It: The Authorised Biography of Victoria Wood by Jasper Rees is out now.

Read From Original Source Here: The State

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