Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Corrie's 'Jack Duckworth' dies

Former Coronation Street actor Bill Tarmey has died
Former Coronation Street actor Bill Tarmey has died

Coronation Street star Bill Tarmey, who played Jack Duckworth for many years, has died.

The 71-year-old died on Friday morning (November 9). It is believed he passed away while on a family holiday in Tenerife.

A spokeswoman for Coronation Street announced his death. A statement from the show said: "The cast, crew and production team at Coronation Street are devastated to hear of Bill's death. Our thoughts and prayers are with Bill's wife and soulmate Ali and their family at this very sad time."

His family asked "for privacy as they grieve for a wonderful husband, father and brother".

The actor left the soap in 2010 after more than 30 years playing the pigeon-fancying, loveable rogue alongside Liz Dawn, who played his wife Vera. His final scenes saw his character die peacefully in his armchair before he was seen sharing a last dance with Vera.

Liz paid tribute, saying: "I am totally bereft. He will always be remembered by everyone he came into contact with because he was such a kind and generous man.

"You couldn't wish to meet a more lovely man and a true gentleman. He was a gentle giant and I will miss him so much."

Nigel Pivaro, who played the Duckworths' layabout son Terry, said: "I am devastated to learn of the passing of someone who became a huge part of both my professional and personal life, who I came to look on as a second father.

"He was a very wise and dignified man who taught me a great deal and whose counsel I came to value greatly."

Bill, a native Mancunian, was dogged by ill-health and suffered a heart attack at 35, followed by a stroke a year later. A heavy smoker, he underwent a quadruple heart bypass 15 years ago and another bypass operation in June 2002.

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