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Ali Bongo dies aged 79

Magician Ali Bongo died in hospital today at the age of 79, a spokesman for the Magic Circle said.

The performer, whose real name was William Wallace, died at St Thomas' Hospital in central London at 9am.

He was president of the Magic Circle and helped devise tricks for other magicians including Paul Daniels.

Acting President of The Magic Circle Jack Delvin said he suffered a stroke on a visit to France to lecture at a magicians convention.

He added: "Ali made his name on television in his own right as The Shreik of Araby and also as Alistair, assistant to David Nixon and as principal advisor to the Paul Daniels Show. He was famous throughout the world of magic and indeed the world generally."

David Renwick, the creator of the television show Jonathan Creek, said he based the show's title character on Ali's work as an adviser to other performers.

Belfast Telegraph