Sarah Harding's Girls Aloud bandmates pay tribute to, 'stunning, unique, crazy, quirky, kind and soft hearted girl'

Sarah Harding's former bandmates have spoken after the devastating news of her passing aged 39 from breast cancer

LONDON - FEBRUARY 18: (L-R) Nadine Coyle, Kimberley Walsh, Sarah Harding, Nicola Roberts and Cheryl Cole of Girls Aloud arrives at the BRIT Awards 2009 at Earls Court on February 18, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Marsland/WireImage)
(Image credit: Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty)

Sarah Harding's bandmates and fellow celebrities have shared their devastation following the sad news of her passing aged only 39-years-old from breast cancer. 

The sad news was announced by Sarah's mother via the singer's Instagram account and her loss has sent shockwaves across the globe. The announcement came only months after Sarah urged women to get health checks following her terminal breast cancer prognosis.

The first member of Girls Aloud to pay tribute to Sarah was Northern Irish star Nadine Coyle. She said, "I am absolutely devastated!! I can’t think of words that could possibly express how I feel about this girl & what she means to me!! I know so many of you will be feeling this way. For now I’m sending so much love to you!!! ❤️❤️"

Nicola Roberts, who made a surprise appearance alongside Cheryl Tweedy the night before Sarah's death had been announced, said, "I’m absolutely devastated and I can’t accept that this day has come. My heart is aching and all day everything we went through together has raced round my mind." 

Rumors surrounding fractious relationships among the band members have been rife since the group first formed. However, in the last year, the group bonded after Sarah's diagnosis.

Sarah Harding's bandmates pay tribute.

(Image credit: Fred Duval / Contributor/Getty Images)

Nicola continued, "Especially this last year since her diagnosis, as hard as the year has been, our new memories are strong in my heart. There are so many things to say and at first it felt to personal to put them here and then I remembered that there are so many other people grieving her too. A part of me or us isn’t here anymore and it’s unthinkable and painful and utterly cruel. She would have loved your messages today ♥️."

Her post finished with the most touching tribute, "Electric girl, you made us. You gave it everything and still with a smile. A white butterfly flew past my window this morning before I knew, it must have been you 🦋."

Kimberly Walsh, who recently welcomed her third son, opened up about her pain—but also celebrated the wonderful things about the Stockport native too.

Kimberly said, "Beautiful Sarah this hurts so bad. To wake up and know that you are really gone is too much to bear." 

The mum of three added, "Hearing your infectious chuckle was one of my favourite things in the world. Your fire burned so bright and you loved, lived and laughed so hard. Sending love and strength to everyone who is grieving today. My heart is broken 💔."

The last band member to pay tribute was Cheryl, who said in a heartbreaking Instagram post, "Although we knew this day would arrive I am somehow still feeling at a loss for words that our stunning, unique, crazy, quirky, kind and soft hearted girl has departed."

Cheryl continued to discuss the grief she's feeling and paid tribute to those she knows are also suffering. "As I try to navigate my way through these painfully strange and horribly unfamiliar waves of disbelief & finality I am experiencing, I wanted to extend my condolences to all of our GA fans." 

Acknowledging their loyal fanbase she added, "We were like an extended family for so long and we know so many of you by name. I wanted to make sure you knew just how much your love and continued support meant to Sarah through her most vulnerable times." 

"She was so grateful and you really lifted her spirits when she needed you most 🙏🏼 I also realize so many will be deeply affected by the circumstances of Sarah’s passing… I am sending you all so much love 💔." 

"I love you Sarah… farewell 🕊. Sarah Nicole Harding forever in our hearts 💖💞🙏🏼"

When was Sarah Harding Diagnosed?

Sarah was first diagnosed with cancer in August 2020. Discussing the journey to diagnosis in her memoir Hear Me Out, she explained, "At first I thought it was just a cyst. The trouble was the pain was getting worse."

She continued, "It got so bad that I couldn’t sleep in a bed. Eventually my skin started to bruise. By now I was terrified."

The singer said that she became increasingly aware she was avoiding addressing the issue. “One day I woke up realizing I’d been in denial. Yes there was a pandemic but it was almost as if I’d been using that as an excuse not to face up to the fact that something was very wrong.”

After that, the star faced months of grueling treatment, including chemotherapy and a double mastectomy. On August 26, 2020 she shared harrowing news in an Instagram post. The picture showed her in a hospital bed.

The caption read, "I received the devastating news that the cancer has advanced to other parts of my body. I’m currently undergoing weekly chemotherapy sessions and I am fighting as hard as I possibly can."

She celebrated a ‘small victory’ following her terminal cancer diagnosis, in March 2021, when it appeared that treatment was working to prolong her life. "MRI scans at the end of December revealed that the tumors in my brain and in my lung have shrunk a bit with the treatment,” she explained.

In her memoir, Hear Me Out, Sarah heartbreakingly opened up about her grief over not having children. Despite her illness and the insurmountable challenges it brought, she never stopped working.

In the time since her terminal diagnosis, she released a song, Wear it Like a Crown, and published her memoir too. Both proved to be huge successes, showing that despite her health deteriorating—this star never stopped shining.

Sarah is survived by her loving mum Marie, close family, friends, and legions of devoted fans.

BOREHAMWOOD, ENGLAND - AUGUST 01: Sarah Harding enters the Big Brother House for the Celebrity Big Brother launch at Elstree Studios on August 1, 2017 in Borehamwood, England. (Photo by Mike Marsland/ WireImage)

(Image credit: Mike Marsland/ WireImage/Getty)

Was Sarah Harding an actor?

Although she's best remembered as a singer, Sarah also acted in the film St Trinians 2 and on Coronation Street where she featured for four episodes as Joni Preston.

She also featured on multiple reality TV shows where fans got the opportunity to truly fall in love with her charm and wit. Sarah featured in Tumble, The Jump, Celebrity Masterchef, and won Celebrity Big Brother back in 2017.

Aoife Hanna
Junior News Editor

Aoife is an Irish journalist and writer with a background in creative writing, comedy, and TV production.

Formerly woman&home's junior news editor and a contributing writer at Bustle, her words can be found in the Metro, Huffpost, Delicious, Imperica and EVOKE.

Her poetry features in the Queer Life, Queer Love anthology.

Outside of work you might bump into her at a garden center, charity shop, yoga studio, lifting heavy weights, or (most likely) supping/eating some sort of delicious drink/meal.