Broadcaster, scientist and environmental campaigner David Bellamy, known for his distinctive voice and appearances on Don’t Ask Me and Bellamy On Botany, has died aged 86.
Born 1933, Bellamy first came to the British public’s attention after he was interviewed on the effects of marine pollution following the tanker ship Torrey Canyon oil spill in 1967.
Over his 30-year career on television, he fronted various factual programmes on science and specifically botany, including Bellamy On Botany, Bellamy’s Britain, Bellamy’s Europe, Don’t Ask Me and Bellamy’s Backyard Safari.
However, the broadcaster fell somewhat out of favour in the early 2000s when he first expressed his scepticism about global warming, an opinion he reiterated a decade later in The Independent: “[Global warming] is not happening at all, but if you get the idea that people’s children will die because of CO2 they fall for it.”
Various notable figures from British television, including Piers Morgan and Bill Oddie, have paid tribute to Bellamy’s on-screen legacy.
Oddie described the late presenter as “a first class naturalist, with boundless skills to convey his enthusiasm,” while Good Morning Britain’s Morgan said that Bellamy was “a brilliant naturalist, broadcaster and character”.
David Bellamy- unmistakable voice , looks, and character. Made for TV! But also a first class naturalist, with boundless skills to convey his enthusiasm. Maybe too much for the purists, but loved by millions. I was once mistaken for him. Not sure either of us was flattered!— Bill Oddie Official (@BillOddie) December 11, 2019
RIP David Bellamy, 86.— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) December 11, 2019
A brilliant naturalist, broadcaster & character. pic.twitter.com/dKgxHVE3Ew
He won BAFTA’s Richard Dimbleby Award in 1978 for his ITV series Botanic Man, and was appointed OBE for his work in 1994.