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Coronation Street star Roy Hudd dies following a short illness aged 83

Roy Hudd
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 04: Roy Hudd attends the Oldie of the Year awards at Simpsons in the Strand on February 4, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage) (Image credit: WireImage)

Comedian and actor Roy Hudd has died at the age of 83.

TV legend Roy Hudd, who is better known to soap fans as Coronation Street undertaker Archie Shuttleworth, has passed away following a short illness.

Roy enjoyed a hugely successful career that spanned over five decades and saw him star in TV shows like Call the Midwife, Midsomer Murders, Law and Order, Benidorm, Casualty and Broadchurch.

Veteran comedian Roy Hudd is Joe Collett

Veteran comedian Roy Hudd played Joe Collett in Call the Midwife (Picture: BBC/Neal Street Productions) (Image credit: BBC/Neal Street Productions)

The actor played Weatherfield legend Archie from 2002 until 2010, and the character was mentioned again recently when Archie died off screen in 2018, leaving close friend Audrey Robert's his life savings.

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Roy's first break in the world of TV was appearing on the BBC's Not So Much A Programme, More A Way Of Life, which also starred David Frost, William Rushton, John Bird, Eleanor Bron and Michael Crawford.

Roy Hudd Coronation Street

Roy starred in Coronation Street as legendary Weatherfield undertaker, Archie Shuttleworth (Picture: PA) (Image credit: PA)

In 1957 he made his debut as a comedian at the Streatham Hill Theatre, and in 1958 he joined the Redcoats at Butlin's Clacton, where he worked alongside Sir Cliff Richard and Dave Allen.

He then went on to appear on TV sketch shows including the Roy Hudd Show, and the Illustrated Weekly Hudd in the 1960s.

His agent announced today: "We are sad to announce the passing of the much-loved and amazingly talented Roy Hudd OBE.

Roy Hudd The Illustrated Weekly Hudd

Roy appeared in the BBC television series 'The Illustrated Weekly Hudd' (Picture: Don Smith/Radio Times via Getty Images) (Image credit: Radio Times via Getty Images)

"After a short illness, Roy passed away peacefully on the afternoon of Sunday the 15th March, with his wife Debbie at his side.

"The family would ask you to respect their privacy at this very sad time."

Tributes have been pouring in for the star, with The Yvonne Arnaud Theatre in Guildford posting a message on Twitter that reads: "We are all saddened to hear of the passing of Roy Hudd.

"Roy appeared on our stage several times, with his most recent role in A Woman of No Importance last October/November.

"Our thoughts are with his loved ones at this difficult time."

Coronation Street airs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 7.30pm and 8.30pm on ITV.