Actor Bill Maynard has died at the age of 89.
The star was best known for his role as Claude Greengrass in ITV drama ‘Heartbeat’, which was set in 1960s Yorkshire.
His family confirmed news of his death on Saturday (30 March), stating he died in hospital in Leicestershire, after breaking his hip from a fall off his mobility scooter.
His daughter-in-law Jacqueline Reddin said: “He was larger than life and he just loved showbiz. He was so proud of the fact that he had been working for 81 years.”
Bill was part of the ‘Heartbeat’ cast between 1992 and 2000, later crossing over into spin-off show ‘The Royal’ until 2003.
Most recently he appeared in the BBC drama ‘The Moorside’, which told the story of the real-life disappearance of school girl Shannon Matthews.
Bill had a varied career, and in his early days in the business, he entered the race to represent the UK at Eurovision in 1957, but finished in fourth place.
He went on to work with Ronnie Barker in ‘Seven Of One’ and also had small roles in some of the ‘Carry On’ films, including ‘Carry On Marton’ and ‘Carry On Dick’.
Bill also had a foray into politics in 1984, when he stood as an independent Labour candidate, opposing Tony Benn in the Chesterfield by election. However, he did not win the seat.
He suffered a period of ill health in the early 2000s when he had a series of strokes, leaving him with impaired mobility.
Bill is survived by his two children, five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.