Children’s entertainer Andy Cunningham, best known as the creator of BBC’s Bodger and Badger, has passed away aged 67.
In a statement to Press Association, Cunningham’s sister Tessa confirmed that the star had passed away after a battle with cancer on Monday, at the Royal Sussex County Hospital.
She said: “‘Andy lived to be loved and to make people laugh – starting with me, his little sister.
“He had a quicksilver brain, a rebellious attitude, boundless compassion particularly for the underdog, unstinting levels of generosity and, of course, a passion for mashed potato.”
“I adored him and, long before he found fame, was immensely proud to have the funniest, cleverest big brother in the universe.”
Cunningham played handyman Simon Bodger in the children’s series, and voiced his companion, a talking badger who had a great fondness for mashed potatoes. The series ran between 1989 and 1999 and was repeated on CBBC in the early noughties.
Fans have taken to Twitter in reaction to the sad news:
— Russty Russ – #Retro (@russty_russ) June 7, 2017
— Hani ???? (@hani_rae) June 7, 2017
RIP Andy Cunningham, AKA Bodger AND Badger. 🙁 We should all have mashed potatoes in his honour tonight.
— Christmas Nerd Cave ???????????????????????????? #IndyWales (@CymruNerdCave) June 7, 2017
— Ben Haenow (@BenHaenow) June 7, 2017
— Helen Oakleigh (@Helen_Oakleigh) June 7, 2017