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The singer revealed last August that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer, which had spread to other parts of her body.
Her mother Marie announced the singer’s death on Instagram and described her “beautiful” daughter as “a bright shining star”.
The caption under the black and white image of Ms Harding smiling 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”
Many took to social media to share their condolences to the late singer who reportedly passed away at home on Sunday morning.
Steps popstar Ian “H” Watkins, 45, wrote on the In stagram post: “Fly high beautiful Sarah xx I will miss you xx”.
TV and radio star Fearne Cotton, 40, wrote: “Oh my gosh I’m so sorry to hear this. I’m sending your family so much love and strength. She was always kind and so much fun to be around. I’m very sorry for your loss. Prayers and love to you.”
Atomic Kitten’s Natasha Hamilton, 39, wrote: “I am so sorry for your loss, this is heartbreaking. Thinking of you all x”.
Game of Thrones actress Natalie Emmanuel, 32, tweeted: “Ah no…. So sad to hear about Sarah Harding’s passing. F***cancer man….”
JLS star Oritse Williams, 34, tweeted: “Heartbreaking to hear that Sarah Harding from Girls Aloud has just passed away after a long battle with cancer. The times we met she was always so bubbly, such a big beautiful personality.”
Earlier this year, Ms Harding said she was told by a doctor she will probably not be alive next Christmas.
In an extract of her memoir, titled Hear Me Out, which was published in The Times, Ms Harding wrote: “In December my doctor told me that the upcoming Christmas would probably be my last.
“I don’t want an exact prognosis. I don’t know why anyone would want that.
“Comfort and being as pain-free as possible is what’s important to me now.”
Ms Harding said she is “trying to live and enjoy every second of my life, however long it might be”.
“I am having a glass of wine or two during all this, because it helps me relax,” she added.
“I’m sure some people might think that’s not a great idea, but I want to try to enjoy myself.
“I’m at a stage now where I don’t know how many months I have left.
“Who knows, maybe I’ll surprise everyone, but that’s how I’m looking at things.”
Ms Harding said publicly revealing her diagnosis was “scary” but was also “the right thing to do”.
She said the support she has received has been “incredible”, adding: “I’ve been inundated with lovely messages from my fans. I’m grateful beyond words for that.”
Ms Harding’s book was released earlier this year which documented her life as a pop star and chronicled her battle with cancer.
In an extract, she revealed how the treatment she endured “will have killed any chance I might have had” of having children.
The singer told of how she came to the emotional realisation she would never become a mother during a phone call with former band member Cheryl, 37.
Following her five year relationship with DJ Tom Crane, Ms Harding admitted that “losing him was one of the biggest mistakes of my life.”
The pair were previously engaged and they announced their split in 2011.
Ms Harding found fame nearly two decades ago when she beat several thousand other entrants to win a place on ITV’s Popstars: The Rivals.
It was on that show that she met bandmates Cheryl, Nadine Coyle, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh and launched Girls Aloud, going on to score four number one singles and two number one albums, with tracks including Sound Of The Underground, Love Machine and The Promise.