Eric Sykes, one of Britain’s best-loved comedy actors and writers, has died at the age of 89, his manager has said.
He found fame in a series of TV sitcoms from the 1950s, including Sykes And A… alongside co-star Hattie Jacques.
He also starred in films including Monte Carlo or Bust, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and The Others.
Manager Norma Farnes said: “Eric Sykes, 89, star of TV, stage and films, died peacefully this morning after a short illness. His family were with him.”
Born in Oldham, Sykes started his career writing radio material for comedians including Frankie Howerd, Tony Hancock and The Goon Show.
He stepped into the spotlight with his own TV shows including Dress Rehearsal in 1956, Sykes And A… in 1960 and a follow-up, simply titled Sykes, in 1972.
In the latter two, he and Jacques developed a popular partnership as a bumbling brother and long-suffering sister living at 28 Sebastopol Terrace.
Former BBC head of comedy Jon Plowman paid tribute to Sykes as “a warm man, a kind man, a warm family man”.
“We won’t see his like again,” he said. “He was a wonderful improviser.
“His genius was both as a scriptwriter but also someone who could do stuff off the cuff. He was classless and funny and warm”.
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