Bruce Forsyth dies aged 89

Bruce Forsyth. Photo: Robert Workman Entertainer Bruce Forsyth, 89. Photo: Robert Workman
by -

Veteran entertainer and television presenter Bruce Forsyth has died aged 89, his family has confirmed.

Earlier this year Forsyth was admitted to hospital with a severe chest infection, and had been unwell for some time.

Best known in recent years for presenting BBC series Strictly Come Dancing and for hosting gameshows such as The Price is Right and The Generation Game, Forsyth began his career in light entertainment.

Born in 1928, he started touring in variety performances in 1942 aged 14 as Boy Bruce – The Mighty Atom. After appearing in several comedy double acts he began hosting weekly variety television show Sunday Night at the London Palladium from 1958, and in 1971 he hosted the first ever series of The Generation Game on BBC One.

His manager Ian Wilson issued a statement to the BBC: “It is with great sadness that the Forsyth family announce that Sir Bruce passed away this afternoon, peacefully at his home surrounded by his wife Wilnelia and all his children.

“A couple of weeks ago, a friend visited him and asked him what he had been doing these last 18 months. With a twinkle in his eye, he responded ‘I’ve been very, very busy… being ill!'”

BBC director general Tony Hall paid tribute to Forsyth, calling him “one of the greatest entertainers our country has ever known”.

“His warmth and wit were legendary. I’ve never seen anyone quite like him when it comes to performing in front of a crowd. He had a remarkable chemistry with his audience – that’s what made him such an amazing professional and why he was so loved,” Hall continued.

“He has been part of all our lives, and we’ll miss him dearly.”