Beverley Jayne Hardwick was left devastated after hearing about the death of TV star Lynda Bellingham – and made a snap decision to launch a Facebook campaign to get her famous OXO advert back on television.
And she was delighted when she was told, during a phone call broadcast live on Loose Women, that she had been successful and that the ad will be shown on prime time television on Christmas Day.
Lynda – All Creatures Great and Small actress and Loose Women panellist – lost her fight against cancer on October 19, despite stopping treatment so she could have ‘one last Christmas’ with her family.
Ms Hardwick, a driving instructor from Lofthouse, said: “I was gutted. I grew up with Lynda on the television and I have a family member who is suffering from the same type of cancer.
“I thought it would be a great idea to get the OXO Christmas advert back. I’d had a cancellation that day and just decided to start the Facebook page. Within 24 hours I had 50,000 ‘likes’. I couldn’t believe it.
“Since then it has just spiralled. I honestly never thought it would get this much attention. I was invited on to Loose Women but I had a driving test the next morning so they told me over the phone instead. It was fantastic news.”
The ‘Bring back the OXO Christmas advert in memory of Lynda Bellingham’ page has now had more than nine million views and has been ‘liked’ by more than 159,000 people. It is even being followed by Lynda’s son Michael Peluso, who wrote: “Thank you so much everyone...u r all stars...thank u thank u thank u for all the support Xxx.”
Ms Hardwick, 44, said: “Lynda’s wish was to see one more Christmas with her family but she never got that wish. Now thousands of families can spend their Christmas with Lynda. I just thought it was a very fitting way to remember her. Lynda was an inspirational women, she was very open about her fight against cancer and I am delighted that this is being done in her memory.”