Hi-de-Hi! sitcom star Paul Shane died on Thursday at the age of 72. Shane’s agent confirmed the news, saying that the actor passed away while surrounded by close family at a hospice in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
Shane made his acting debut by playing entertainer Ted Bovis in Hi-de-Hi!, a TV series set in a holiday camp. Later on, he appeared in You Rang, M’Lord, alongside former cast members of the sitcom.
Paul Shane was born in Rotherham in 1940 and started working as a miner. He turned to the entertainment industry after an accident. He began by singing and entertaining in pubs and clubs in South Yorkshire.
The actor was offered TV work in the early 1970s, though his big break didn’t come until 1980 and the BBC hit Hi-de-Hi!, written by Jimmy Perry and David Croft. The series ran until 1988 and won large audiences, along with a BAFTA for Best Comedy Series, awarded in 1984.
Linda Kramer, Paul Shane’s agent for 15 years, added that Paul loved playing the part of Ted Bovis in the sitcom. She added that he considered it the “ultimate tribute” when he was the subject of This is Your Life, a biographical TV show.
Along with Hi-de-Hi! and You Rang M’Lord, Shane also appeared on other shows, like Holby City and A Touch Of Frost. After his TV career, the actor spent time performing in theatres, including performances in pantomimes. Shane once spoke of undergoing life-saving heart surgery following a series of tests. He stated in May 2009:
“I went to see a heart specialist and an angiogram showed I’ve got narrowing of the arteries. I’m either having two or four bypasses — they don’t know, until the operation. If I didn’t have this op I could be dead in 12 months or I could last ten years. You don’t know, but I’m not taking that risk.”
It is unclear what illness Paul Shane died from. He leaves behind three daughters and six grandchildren. His wife passed away in 2001.
[Image via Jonathan Parramint]