The actress, a mother-of-six, died at her home in Surrey on Sunday with her family by her side, two years after her final appearance as chain-smoking Dot Cotton, a role she played for 35 years.
Taking to Instagram, Maisie – who departed the soap in 2021 after becoming a household name as Tiffany Butcher – shared a behind-the-scenes photo of herself during her early years on the soap alongside screen veteran June.
Captioning the photo, she wrote: ‘Beautiful inside and out. Rest in peace June Brown.’
Rest in peace: Maisie Smith paid tribute to EastEnders icon June Brown after her death at the age of 95 was confirmed by the BBC on Monday afternoon
Remembering the actress during her years on the show, Jake Wood – best known for his role as Max Branning – shared a photo of Brown on set as she prepared to shoot a scene.
He wrote: ‘RIP June. Here she is on set in her element. A true pro and EastEnders legend. Lucky to have met and worked with her, I’ll always remember her kindness and the many laughs.’
On-screen granddaughter Milly Zero paid tribute to the actress with a series of images, among them a backstage shot of Brown’s legendary meeting with Lady Gaga on The Graham Norton Show in 2013.
In an accompanying caption, the actress – who plays Dotty Cotton on the long-running soap – paid tribute to her ‘Grandma Dot.’
She added: ‘I have never met anyone who cared about their craft so deeply. An artist, a national treasure, an icon & an inspiration to us all. You will always live on in the hearts of everybody you touched. There will never be anyone quite like June
‘A huge, huge loss. Today and always my thoughts are with her family, friends & the whole team at @eastenders.’
Tragic: Remembering the actress during her years on the show, Jake Wood – best known for his role as Max Branning – shared a photo of Brown on set as she prepared to shoot a scene
Gone but not forgotten: Current cast-member Milly Zero remembered the actress in a series of images, among them a shot of June during her legendary meeting with Lady Gaga on The Graham Norton Show
Adam Woodyatt, the show’s longest serving cast-member as Ian Beale, remembered the actress fondly alongside a photo of Brown taken during her EastEnders heyday.
He wrote: ‘I’m lost for words, something June never was. So many memories, so much fun. Just purely and simply an incredible woman who had the most incredible life and career, I was fortunate to have shared a small part of it. They never made you a Dame (we did try), but to me you will always be Dame Brown.’
Former cast-member Jacqueline Jossa – best known for her role as Lauren Branning – wrote: ‘I am so heartbroken. You will be so missed. Sharing the screen with you, a family with you, was a dream come true, something I will never ever forget.
‘Most of all though, your stories, your humour and just such calming words when I needed them. You made my joining the show so welcoming. I will keep these memories close to my heart. Rest in peace June.’
Admitting it was an honour to star alongside the legendary actress, Danny Dyer – a show stalwart thanks to his role as Queen Vic landlord Mick Carter – wrote: ‘Rest in peace June. So privileged to have graced the screen with ya. An icon in its truest form.’
Devastated: Adam Woodyatt, the show’s longest serving cast-member as Ian Beale, remembered the actress fondly alongside a photo of Brown taken during her EastEnders heyday
Shock: Former cast-member Jacqueline Jossa – best known for her role as Lauren Branning – admitted June’s death had left her ‘heartbroken’
Jessie Wallace – better known as Albert Square resident Kat Slater – was also among the first to pay tribute to the actress on Monday afternoon.
Remembering their time together on the soap, she wrote: ‘I loved June. She was such a character and a great talent. So many story’s and she always made me laugh. June will always be a Dame in my eyes. RIP lovely lady.’
Patsy Palmer – an EastEnders icon in her own right thanks to her former role as Bianca Jackson – shared a series of photos as she looked back at Brown’s life, among them her appearance with the late Dame Barbara Windsor at the TRIC Awards.
She wrote: ‘Oh June… what words can I say about such a wonderful woman !!!! I honestly thought you would be here forever. Such a BRILLIANT ACTRESS !!!!! YOU ARE EASTENDERS ! Such an ICON and so much fun to work with. I loved working on scenes with you. Your silence, your clever delivery of even the most terrible scripts. I WILL NEVER FORGET YOU.
‘You brought joy to so many for many years. June I love you have a safe transition. Barbara Is surely waiting for you to take care of you up there. RIP you beautiful woman. You always get the award for best actress in my book. Stunning, professional to the core!
‘A true actress from those wonderful days of inspiration for the younger generation that wanted to act. I loved your story’s. Always had a fag hanging out your mouth but you wouldn’t be you without it.’
Elsewhere broadcaster Piers Morgan remembered the actress after meeting for his ITV show Life Stories.
Sharing a photo of himself with Brown on set, he wrote: ‘RIP June Brown, 95. A wonderfully talented actress whose long-time portrayal of irascible fag-puffing Dot Cotton in EastEnders was one of the all-time great performances in British Television.
‘June was such a funny, feisty, fabulous lady off screen too. I loved our Life Stories show together, especially after she moaned on arrival that she’d had to forego partying with Lady Gaga the night before to be there! Very sad news.’
Former Emmerdale star and ex-Loose Women panellist Lisa Riley added: ‘LEGEND… full stop rest in peace…..and have a lot of FUN whilst you are resting!!!’
Privileged: Current cast-member Danny Dyer admitted it was an honour to share the screen with the legendary actress
Then and now: Patsy Palmer – an EastEnders legend in her own right – shared images of Brown during her early years as an actress alongside more recent photos from Albert Square, as well as a shot of June with Dame Barbara Windsor
Great talent: Jessie Wallace also had fond memories of the actress from her time on the long-running soap opera
For decades Brown was one of the most famous faces on British TV, playing the devout Christian famed on Albert Square for her chain smoking, gossiping and mothering of those in need.
Her relationship with her tearaway son Nasty Nick Cotton, John Altman, who she forgave and forgave for his crimes until she gave up on him and he died after consuming a bad batch of heroin bought for him by his very own mother.
Her loving relationship with Jim Branning, played by John Bardon, would captivate millions, leaving fans in tears as she said goodbye to him following a stroke.
Brown’s family revealed she died peacefully last night while the BBC urged fans to raise a glass of sweet sherry in her memory. The star still loved a tipple and a cigarette well into her 90s.
Old times: Broadcaster Piers Morgan remembered the actress having previously interviewed her for his popular Life Stories TV show
Legend: Former Emmerdale star and Loose Women panellist Lisa Riley was also among the tributes on Thursday afternoon
An EastEnders spokesman said: ‘We are deeply saddened to announce that our beloved June Brown, OBE, MBE, sadly passed away last night.
‘There are not enough words to describe how much June was loved and adored by everyone at EastEnders, her loving warmth, wit and great humour will never be forgotten.
‘June created one of the most iconic characters in Dot Cotton, not just in soap but in British television, and having appeared in 2,884 episodes, June’s remarkable performances created some of EastEnders’ finest moments.
‘We send all our love and deepest sympathies to June’s family and friends. A very bright light has gone out at EastEnders today but we shall all be raising a sweet sherry in June’s memory.
‘Rest in peace, our dearest June. You will never be forgotten.’
Farewell: EastEnders star June, pictured in 2020 aged 93, has died at the age of 95
Legendary: June enjoyed 35 years on the show – filming her final scenes in 2020 (right)
A statement from her family said: ‘We are deeply saddened to announce our beloved mother, June, passed away very peacefully at her home in Surrey on Sunday evening, with her family by her side.
‘We would kindly ask that our privacy is respected at this very difficult time.’
The actress’s 35-year run as the Albert Square mainstay began in 1985. before she left the show in 2020.
Brown was perhaps EastEnders’ best-known star and larger-than-life Dot was known for her devout Christian faith and hypochondria, as well as her endless cigarette addiction.
The veteran actress, who had a long career in television and theatre, arrived on Albert Square shortly after the soap began in 1985, and aside from a break between 1993 and 1997, was a regular for more than three decades.
On January 31 2008 she single-handedly starred in an episode called Pretty Baby, in which she spoke to a cassette recorder about her life so that her husband could listen to it as he lay in hospital following a stroke.
Brown served in the Women’s Royal Naval Service at the end of the Second World War, and then left to train at London’s Old Vic Theatre School in Lambeth.
Before joining EastEnders she had roles in Coronation Street, Doctor Who, Minder and The Bill, as well as costume dramas The Duchess Of Duke Street and Oliver Twist.
After joining Albert Square she also starred in comedy Ain’t Misbehavin in 1997, and played Nanny Slagg in the BBC’s production of Gormenghast in 2000.
She announced the bombshell news of her exit from EastEnders in 2020 with little fanfare, revealing her decision on a podcast with a former co-star.
Dot had not featured in the soap for a month, when she left a voicemail for Sonia Fowler saying she had moved to Ireland.
At the time an EastEnders’ spokesman said the door remained open for a comeback, appearing to leave the decision in Brown’s hands.
Some of Dot’s biggest storylines explored controversial issues such as euthanasia, cancer and homophobia.
Her marriage to Jim Branning, played by John Bardon, was popular among fans – while she was also mother to the notorious criminal Nick Cotton, played by John Altman.
Brown won several awards for her portrayal of Dot, including a lifetime achievement honour at the 2005 British Soap Awards.
In 2009, she was nominated for the best actress prize at the TV Baftas for her standalone episode of the soap.
In December 2021 Brown was made an OBE in the New Year Honours, as she was recognised for services to drama and to charity.
She was previously made an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2008 for services to drama and charity.
Brown married her first husband, John Garley, in 1950. After his death she married actor Robert Arnold in 1958 and had six children with him.