DAME Vera Lynn has died aged 103, the singer's family have this morning confirmed.

The Forces' Sweetheart well-known for her wartime song 'We'll Meet Again' died 'surrounded by her family' on Thursday. 

A statement from the family said: "The family are deeply saddened to announce the passing of one of Britain's best-loved entertainers at the age of 103.

"Dame Vera Lynn, who lived in Ditchling, East Sussex, passed away earlier today, 18 June 2020, surrounded by her close family."

The singer entertained troops with morale-boosting visits to the front line during the Second World War.

She was also well-known for singing The White Cliffs Of Dover, There'll Always Be An England, I'll Be Seeing You, Wishing and If Only I Had Wings, during the Blitz.

Tributes have been pouring in from far and wide this morning as Britons have been left saddened by the news.

Paying tribute, Sir Cliff Richard said: "Dame Vera Lynn was truly an icon. She was held in such high esteem and my best, and favourite, memory was sharing a performance with her in front of Buckingham Palace for the VE Day celebrations in 1995.

"We walked to the stage through a crowd of survivors of that war, and they were reaching out to touch and get a smile from Vera.

"I heard the words ... 'God bless you' ... 'Thank you' ... 'We love you' for their very own Forces' Sweetheart! A great singer, a patriotic woman and a genuine icon.

"I am happy to use the words called out on the wonderful day. Vera, thank you, God bless you, and I loved you too. Rest in a very deserved peace."

Actress Miriam Margolyes said: "Dame Vera never lost her reality. The voice like a bell was a gift, which she shared so generously and bravely.

"But the magic was that her personality was genuine, open, warm. Meeting her was one of the high points of my life.

"She looked at you and saw you. And connected. There is no-one in our lives, except the Queen, who had the power to connect a nation.

"For that, she will be remembered and always with love."

Just last month, Dame Vera urged Britain to "remember the brave boys and what they sacrificed for us."

At the time, she added: "They left their families and homes to fight for our freedom and many lost their lives trying to protect us and our liberties."

She also encouraged the British public to "rediscover that same spirit that saw us through the war" amid the coronavirus pandemic, in a special message before she turned 103 in March.

In May this year, Dame Vera became the oldest artist to score a top 40 album in the UK.

The 103-year-old saw her greatest hits album 100 re-enter the chart at number 30, boosted by commemorations for the 75th anniversary of VE day on May 8.