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11/12/2017 16:22 GMT

Keith Chegwin Dead: Maggie Philbin Pays Heartfelt Tribute To Ex-Husband And 'Multi-Coloured Swap Shop' Co-Star

They married in 1982 after falling in love on the kids TV show.

Keith Chegwin’s former ‘Multi-Coloured Swap Shop’ co-star and ex-wife Maggie Philbin has paid a heartfelt tribute, following news of his death

It was announced the presenter and entertainer had died following a long battle with a progressive lung condition on Monday (11 December). 

After hearing of his passing, Maggie fondly remembered falling in love with Cheggers after meeting on ‘Swap Shop’ in 1978. 

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Keith Chegwin and Maggie Philbin in 1982

Posting a statement on her website, she said: “I am sure you will have seen the heartbreaking news about Keith who died earlier today. It is incredibly sad.”

She continued: “Keith was a one-off – full of life, generous and with a focus on things that mattered – his family.

“I saw him two months ago at his sister Janice’s wedding, where he was still attempting to be life and soul of the party despite being on portable oxygen and made sure he knew how much he meant to us all.

“Our daughter Rose flew home from San Francisco to be with him over the last few weeks and I know he was surrounded by so much love from his second wife Maria, their son Ted, his sister Janice, his twin brother Jeff and his father Colin.

“Keith was loved by everyone who knew and worked with him. I first met him when we did a film about windsurfing when I joined Swap Shop in 1978 and was immediately struck by his fun, energy and kindness. He drove me home to Leicestershire from that freezing lake in Staines, insisting it was on his own way home. (He lived in Twickenham)

“He leaves us all with very special memories.”

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Keith and Maggie with their daughter Rose

Keith and Maggie presented ‘Multi-Coloured Swap Shop’ together alongside Noel Edmonds and John Craven from 1978 to 1982, and married after the show ended. 

The couple divorced in 1993, having had one daughter, Rose, together. 

Keith went on to marry Maria Fielden in 2000, with whom he shared a son, Ted. 

The family said in a statement: “We are heartbroken to share the news that Keith Chegwin sadly passed away following a long-term battle with a progressive lung condition, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, which rapidly worsened towards the end of this year. 

“Keith died peacefully at home shortly after midnight on the 11th of December.

“His wife Maria, his daughter Rose and his son Ted were by his side.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank Severn Hospice for the kindness, support and care they have shown us all over the last few weeks.

“Keith was a loving husband, father, son, brother, uncle and friend. We would respectfully ask to be left to mourn his passing in private.”

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