Davina McCall's touching tribute to friend Sarah Harding—who passed away from breast cancer last month

The TV presenter was hosting Stand Up to Cancer on Channel 4 and remembered the Girls Aloud star

davina mccall
(Image credit: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Davina McCall has paid a heartwarming and emotional tribute to her friend and late pop star Sarah Harding, who passed away earlier this year due to breast cancer. 

Sarah died aged 39 from breast cancer, following her diagnosis in August 2020. She underwent a mastectomy and chemotherapy in a bid to prolong her life, but passed away in September this year.

The stars had known each other for two decades since Davina McCall presented PopStars the Rival. The hit show launched Sarah's career when she made the final five for a new girl band called Girls Aloud. 

Davina paid tribute to her on Channel 4's Stand Up to Cancer, a show which helps to raise money for cancer charity Cancer Research UK.

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In Davina's tribute, on the show, she called her friend and the pop star 'absolutely brilliant'. She went on to add, "She'd given herself a hard time for not going to sort it out earlier. That, for me, is always the hardest thing."

"There's nothing like the look on someone's face when they realize that what they're being told is there's no treatment. This is palliative care from now on."

Talking about this and giving advice she went on to say, "We need to help people to find ways of detecting changes in their bodies, but never shaming anybody, ever, ever, ever, and least of all shaming yourself, ever. If you get sick, it's not your fault."

In March Sarah also urged women, who had signs of breast cancer, to have it checked (opens in new tab). She said at the time, “I kept thinking that if there was a chance just one person who read my story decided to get checked and was treated in time, then it was worth it."

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As well as meeting on PopStars the Rivals the two TV personalities worked together on various charity engagements and also on reality show The Jump in 2016.

Sarah's mother took to Instagram last month to share the news of Sarah's death, which said, “It’s with deep heartbreak that today I’m sharing the news that my beautiful daughter Sarah has sadly passed away. Many of you will know of Sarah’s battle with cancer and that she fought so strongly from her diagnosis until her last day."

"She slipped away peacefully this morning. I’d like to thank everyone for their kind support over the past year. It meant the world to Sarah and it gave her great strength and comfort to know she was loved. I know she won’t want to be remembered for her fight against this terrible disease – she was a bright shining star and I hope that’s how she can be remembered instead.- Marie x”

Sarah is a freelance journalist - writing about the royals and celebrities for Woman & Home, fitness and beauty for the Evening Standard and how the world of work has changed due to the pandemic for the BBC. 


She also covers a variety of other subjects and loves interviewing leaders and innovators in the beauty, travel and wellness worlds for numerous UK and overseas publications. 


As a journalist, she has written thousands of profile pieces - interviewing CEOs, real-life case studies and celebrities - interviewing everyone from Emma Bunton to the founder of Headspace.