Tributes have poured in for Coronation Street legend Bill Tarmey whose death was announced earlier today.
Tarmey starred as Jack Duckworth in the ITV1 soap between 1979 and 2010 and it is for his partnership with Liz Dawn, Jack’s wife Vera, that the actor will be most fondly remembered. The pair became so well-loved they feature at Madame Tussaud’s Blackpool (pictured above)
Liz Dawn, Jack’s wife Vera in the soap from 1976-2008, said – “Bill was part of my family. When you work with someone for so long, as we did, it becomes more than just work.
“Our families were close and I am devastated for [wife] Ali and his family. I am totally bereft. He will always be remembered by everyone he came into contact with because he was such a kind and generous man. You couldn’t wish to meet a more lovely man and a true gentleman. He was a gentle giant and I will miss him so much.”
Nigel Pivaro, who played Jack and Vera’s son Terry for several stints between 1983 and 2012, said – “I am devastated to learn of the passing of someone who became a huge part of both my professional and personal life, who I came to look on as a second father.
“He was a very wise and dignified man who taught me a great deal and whose counsel I came to value greatly. We are all rightly bereft at the loss we will feel knowing that the world will be a little poorer without Bill to lighten it up with his warm humour.”
Current cast member Alan Halsall – Jack and Vera’s lodger and surrogate son Tyrone, said – “He was very close to me… I worked with him here for many years. He was a wonderful man.
On-screen, people knew him as Jack and loved him as Jack, and, you know, the people who knew him off-screen loved him just as much as Bill. I loved him as his character but as a man I love him a lot more.”
Chris Fountain, who joined the saga as Jack’s grandson Tommy in 2011, wrote on Twitter – “Really sad to hear about bill tarmey passing away, a true Corrie legend who I wish I’d had the pleasure of working with, he will be missed x”
William Roache, who has played Ken Barlow in the soap since 1960, said – “Over the years Coronation Street has produced characters who are really powerful and legendary – Jack Duckworth was one of those… this was down to Bill Tarmey’s incredible skills as an actor. He had amazing comic timing and was a genuinely warm and wonderful human being.”
Bill Tarmey: 4th April 1941 – 9th November 2012