Gogglebox star Andy Michael has died aged 61 following a short illness, the Channel 4 show has confirmed.
In a statement shared on Twitter, Gogglebox said Andy died last weekend with his family by his side.
“Retired hotelier Andy, who brought much wit and insight to Gogglebox, was one of the show’s original cast members, appearing in the very first episode in 2013,” it said.
“Beloved father to Katy, Alex, Pascal and Louis, and cherished husband of Carolyne, Andy was a much loved and respected member of the Gogglebox family and he will be sadly missed.”
We are deeply saddened to share the passing of Gogglebox star Andy Michael at the age of 61 following a short illness.— C4 Gogglebox (@C4Gogglebox) August 27, 2021
Our thoughts are with his family at this time. Andy will be truly missed by the entire Gogglebox family, cast and crew. pic.twitter.com/9swH4JA0RN
“Our love and thoughts are with Carolyne and the entire family. The family have asked for privacy at this very sad time.”
Andy and his family have been regulars on Gogglebox for many years, appearing on the hit show from their home in Brighton.
Andy, his wife Carolyne and their children Louis, Alex, Katie and Pascal joined the Gogglebox cast in series one and have appeared in 16 series of the Channel 4 show since it first aired in 2013.
When Andy stood as the UKIP candidate for Hastings and Rye in the general election in 2015, they were temporarily dropped from the programme.
After failing to win the Hastings and Rye seat, the family rejoined the cast in 2015 and have been Gogglebox staples ever since.
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Speaking to HITC in 2015 about his favourite Gogglebox moment, the former hotelier said that it was a scene in which he watched One Born Every Minute with him family.
“I said, “I remember, Katie…when I put you on my shoulder when you were just born and you didn’t move at all, whereas when I put Louis on my shoulder he kept bouncing off.’ Then Louis, as quick as a flash, said: ‘I’ve been trying to get away from you since day one.'”
Fans began paying tribute to the Gogglebox star, with one viewer writing: “How said – He was always very witty,” while another wrote: “Condolences to the family of Andy Michael. Your family is one of my favourites in Gogglebox. RIP to a very witty and amazing man.”
News of Andy’s death comes shortly after that of fellow Gogglebox star Mary Cook, who died last weekend at the age of 92.