Belfast Telegraph

Coronation Street actor Roy Barraclough dies aged 81

His onscreen wife Julie Goodyear paid tribute to their enduring friendship.

Actor Roy Barraclough has died at the age of 81 after a short illness his representative confirmed on Thursday (01Jun17).

The Lancashire-born soap star, who played Rovers Return landlord Alec Gilroy opposite Julie Goodyear’s Bet Lynch, died at the Willow Wood Hospice in Greater Manchester.

Gavin Barker Associates confirmed his passing in a statement: "Our client Roy Barraclough has passed away today aged 81 after a short illness."

Goodyear was among the first to pay tribute to the actor, who counted roles on TV shows Last of the Summer Wine, Casualty, Last Tango In Halifax, and memorably his double act with comedian Les Dawson.

The 75-year-old actress paid tribute to their enduring friendship which began after they worked together.

“My dearest friend Roy Barraclough has passed away at 6am this morning. I have no words to describe how devastated I feel. We kept in close touch and spoke to each other at least two or three times every week," she said in an emotional statement.

“I will treasure all the happy times we had working and laughing together. We were just like a married couple, crazy, I know, but true. Rest in peace Roy. I will always love you.”

Comic Dawson’s daughter Charlotte wrote on Twitter: “Omg I’m devastated ... at least you get to be reunited with my daddy.”

And Matt Lucas posted a picture of himself and Barraclough filming show Pompidou with the caption: “Happy days with Roy Barraclough on ‘Pompidou’. Lovely man, brilliant actor.”

Coronation Street bosses paid tribute to the star, and plan to dedicate Thursday night’s episode of Corrie to the actor.

“Roy was a delightful person as well as a wonderful actor and will be greatly missed by all of us connected with the programme," executive producer Kieran Roberts said in statement.

Barraclough became a regular cast member on Coronation Street from 1986 until 1992, after previously making occasional appearances. He returned for two more years in 1996, playing Alec for 22 years in total, before finally quitting the cobbles in 1998. Last year he played Mr Grainger in the 2016 reboot of Are You Being Served?

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