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BBC TV's First Newsreader Kenneth Kendall Dies After Suffering Stroke

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Newsreader Kenneth Kendall has died at at the age of 88, his agent said.

The presenter, who was known to many for his role in Channel 4 show Treasure Hunt, died in hospital in Newport on the Isle of Wight on Friday.

kenneth kendall

Kenneth Kendall had a long and successful career at the BBC

His agent, Jeremy Hicks, said he had suffered a stroke in recent weeks and never recovered.

Kendall's partner of many years, Mark Fear, said he passed away peacefully.

The couple owned an art gallery on the island after Kendall retired from television.

Kendall, who was born in India, started work at the BBC as a radio announcer before moving on to television in the 1950s where he was the first newsreader to be seen on screen and became a mainstay of the organisation until he left in 1981.

He joined Treasure Hunt a year later and the show, which featured Anneka Rice scouring the country for clues in a helicopter, become a huge hit for the fledgling channel.

He returned to the BBC in 2010 to appear in a show called The Young Ones which featured six celebrities examining the problems of ageing.

Wincey Willis, who also appeared on Treasure Hunt with Kendall, said he was a "lovely man".

Writing on Twitter, she said


Wincey Willis
Kenneth Kendall was a lovely man, very kind to me when I started Treasure Hunt we were good friends. He was funny and we both loved dogs RIP

Acting BBC director-general Tim Davie said: "As the first British newsreader ever to appear on our TV screens in 1955, the passing of Kenneth Kendall is a sad moment in broadcasting history.

"Kenneth will be remembered for his long and successful career in both radio and later TV and, of course, for his much remarked- upon elegant sense of style.

"As one of the broadcasting greats, he will be hugely missed by colleagues across the BBC."

The BBC also reacted to the news on Twitter:


BBC
We're very sorry to learn of the death of former BBC newsreader Kenneth Kendall pictured here on set in 1976 >>