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Tony Britton dies aged 95, daughter Fern Britton confirms

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Tony Britton played Dr Toby Latimer in comedy sitcom Don’t Wait Up

Actor Tony Britton has died aged 95.

His daughter, TV presenter Fern Britton, announced on Twitter that he had died early on Sunday morning.

“Great actor, director and charmer,” she wrote. “May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.”

Britton was best known for starring in BBC sitcom Don’t Wait Up alongside Nigel Havers in the 1980s, as well as many British films including The Day of the Jackal.

He also appeared in Robin’s Nest alongside Richard O’Sullivan and Tessa Wyatt, and films Operation Amsterdam as well as Sunday Bloody Sunday.

In 1975 he won the Broadcasting Press Guild’s best actor award for his role in The Nearly Man.

Fern Britton’s tweet sparked hundreds of tributes and messages of support on social media.

Jasper Britton, Britton’s son from his second marriage, also tweeted, saying: “As he was wont to say, ‘that’s show business, kid'”.

Comedian and actor Sanjeev Bhaskar wrote: “Profound condolences Fern and gratitude for the joy and entertainment your Dad brought to me and millions of others. Sending love and strength.”

Actor Peter Egan tweeted: “Very sad to see the passing of the legend Tony Britton. A wonderful actor and light comedian. Condolences to his family. A lovely man too.”

Born in Birmingham, Britton served in the Army and worked in an aircraft factory during World War Two.

Interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs in 1973, Britton said he did not come from a theatrical background “at all”.

“I believe one of my many aunts had a good voice but she never used it professionally,” he said.

Britton added: “Ever since I was old enough to think, I’ve always wanted to be an actor. I couldn’t tell you why, it was just there.”

He joined an amateur dramatics group in Weston-super-Mare before turning professional.

He went on to appear on stage at the Old Vic and with the Royal Shakespeare Company, as well as the role of Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady for two and a half years as part of a national tour.

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Tony Britton with his co-star Nigel Havers in sitcom Don’t Wait Up in 1984

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Don’t Wait Up ran from 1983 to 1990

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In 1955, Britton played Romeo on TV, which led him to get a film contract

In 2013, Britton appeared a production of Shakespeare’s King Lear at the Old Vic in London.

He had two children with his first wife, Ruth Hawkins – Fern and scriptwriter Cherry Britton.

He had a son Jasper with his second wife, Danish sculptor Eva Castle Britton (nee Skytte Birkenfeldt).





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