British TV host, comedian, and actor Paul O’Grady died “unexpectedly but peacefully” on Tuesday evening according to a statement by his husband which was provided to local media. He was 67.
Known for his drag queen persona Lily Savage as well as hosting several TV game and talk shows, the multi-award-winning O’Grady was also a radio personality.
One of his most recent TV appearances was in 2022 with now Queen Consort Camilla for an episode of ITV’s For the Love of Dogs, a series O’Grady helped launch in 2012 which follows the staff at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home. More recently, he had been on tour playing Miss Hannigan in a touring version of Annie.
On his official Instagram page, O’Grady wrote on March 13 that he was “thoroughly enjoying playing Hannigan again after so long, especially with a truly amazing and lovely cast.”
A mainstay on British television, he was also the host of ITV’s daytime chat show “The Paul O’Grady Show” and Channel 5’s “Blind Date” reboot. A well-known animal lover, O’Grady presented ITV’s “For the Love of Dogs” and was a vocal supporter of the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home.
Portasio said in a statement: “It is with great sadness that I inform you that Paul has passed away unexpectedly but peacefully yesterday evening…He will be greatly missed by his loved ones, friends, family, animals and all those who enjoyed his humour, wit and compassion.
“I know that he would want me to thank you for all the love you have shown him over the years,” continued Portasio.