Derek Fowlds, Star Of Heartbeat And Yes Minister, Dies Aged 82

The actor also appeared in The Basil Brush Show in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

British actor Derek Fowlds has died at the age of 82.

Derek was best known for his portrayal of Bernard Woolley in the satirical sitcoms Yes Minister and the follow-up Yes, Prime Minister.

His other credits included Heartbeat, in which he played Oscar Blaketon for its entire 18-series run and made one appearance in the spin-off show The Royal.

The news of his death was announced by his family on Friday, who confirmed he had died at Royal United Hospitals Bath, after suffering from pneumonia which led to heart failure caused by sepsis. He was surrounded by his family when he died.

Derek Fowlds pictured in 2010
Derek Fowlds pictured in 2010
Dan Wooller/Shutterstock

His personal assistant and friend Helen Bennett said: β€œHe was the most beloved man to everybody who ever met him, he never had a bad word to say about anybody and he was so well respected, adored by everyone.

β€œYou couldn’t have met a nicer person ever, he was just a wonderful man and I will miss him terribly.”

On the set of Heartbeat in 2006
On the set of Heartbeat in 2006

Derek began his acting career after training at RADA, making his West End debut in a production of The Miracle Worker in 1961, when he was in his early 20s.

The actor later became known for The Basil Brush Show, in which he appeared for eight series as a companion of the beloved fox character.

In more recent years, Derek appeared in minor roles in dramas like Casualty, and was one of the stars who made a cameo in the film adaptation of Run For Your Wife, opposite Danny Dyer and Denise Van Outen.

His final on-screen role was in 2017, appearing in an episode of the BBC soap Doctors.

Derek is survived by his two sons, Jamie and Jeremy, a cameraman and actor, respectively.

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