Christopher Biggins thinks Cilla Black's death was "for the best".

Christopher Biggins

Christopher Biggins

The 66-year-old star was devastated when his friend passed away after a fall aged 72 almost three months ago but thinks she'd rather have died suddenly than struggled on with the health problems that were beginning to plague her.

He said: "Towards the end she was having problems with her hearing and eyesight and arthritis. She would have been the worst patient ever, God forbid anyone would have had to look after Cilla. She would have been angry.

"So I think absolutely the way that it happened was the best."

Christopher - who has mourned the passing of 60 friends in the last two years - admitted he is "struggling" to come to terms with Cilla's death.

He told the Daily Mirror newspaper: "I do struggle a bit. I went to ring her last week to invite her to come and see 'Kinky Boots' in the West End. I would say 'love you' at the end of our phone calls, she would say 'love you more'. We both used to laugh because it was so silly. But I really miss that, I really do."

Meanwhile, the actor revealed he has given up drinking after learning he had suffered liver damage caused by excessive alcohol consumption.

He said: "I was drinking two bottles of wine four or five nights a week. That's easy when you're out and there are trays of red and white.

"But the doctor turned to me and said do you want to die in your own bed in old age, or do you want to die in a hospital bed dribbling a whole lot sooner?

"It was instant. I didn't need to go to AA or anything, like friends have gone to. I just knew. That's when I thought I'm not going to let alcohol rule my life or take me away."