ACTRESS Caroline Aherne has died at the age of 52 after a battle with cancer, her publicist has said.
Aherne was best known for Mrs Merton, The Royle Family and The Fast Show.
Neil Reading, her publicist, said on Saturday: “Caroline Aherne has sadly passed away, after a brave battle with cancer.
“The Bafta award-winning writer and comedy actor died earlier today at her home in Timperley, Greater Manchester. She was 52.
“The family ask for privacy at this very sad time.”
Aherne, who was the narrator of hit Channel 4 show Gogglebox, had been battling lung cancer and had previously been treated for bladder and eye cancer.
Aherne, who had been a smoker, had struggled with health problems for years.
She had fought depression and drink problems and spent time in the Priory clinic following a suicide attempt, before moving to Australia to avoid the glare of publicity.
The star also had a string of failed relationships – her marriage to former New Order guitarist Peter Hook ended and she began a romance with TV researcher Matt Bowers.
They split but she was devastated when he died of cancer at the age of 28.
Aherne admitted alcohol was an attempt to block out her problems.