Actor Tim Pigott-Smith dies aged 70

"Much-loved and admired by his peers, he will be remembered by many as a gentleman and a true friend"

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Bafta-winning British actor Tim Pigott-Smith has died aged 70. 

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Pigott-Smith was a well-known face on stage and on TV with roles in everything from The Jewel in the Crown to Decline and Fall to V for Vendetta. He had been due to appear in a touring production of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman from Monday. 

“It is with deep regret that I have to announce the sad news that Tim Pigott-Smith died this morning,” his agent John Grant said.

“Much-loved and admired by his peers, he will be remembered by many as a gentleman and a true friend. He will be much missed. We ask that you respect the privacy of his wife, the actress Pamela Miles, his son Tom and the family.”

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Pigott-Smith recently played Junior Dean Mr Sniggs in Evelyn Waugh adaptation Decline and Fall, which continues tonight on BBC1.

The actor had been meant to star as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman opposite his wife Pamela Miles in a production launching next week, although Miles pulled out of the play earlier this week. She broke a bone during rehearsals and has since been recovering from surgery.

After receiving Olivier and Tony Award nominations in 2015 and 2016 for his lead role in the play King Charles III, which imagines the Prince of Wales’ succession to the throne following the death of the Queen, he was also lined up for a TV film version of the production due to air later this year. 

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Pigott-Smith, who was born in Rugby in Warwickshire, began his career on the stage before becoming a household name with a starring role in ITV’s The Jewel in the Crown, about the final days of the British Raj in India. The show earned him a best actor Bafta in 1985.

In a long and varied career, the actor has taken on roles in Downton Abbey as Sir Philip Tapsell and Doctor Who as Marco and Captain Harker back in the 1970s.

On the big screen he has appeared in Clash of the Titans and the James Bond movie Quantum of Solace.

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He was made an OBE in the 2017 New Year Honours list for services to drama.