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British sitcom legend Geoffrey Palmer dead at 93: Butterflies and As Time Goes By star dies at home

British sitcom legend Geoffrey Palmer dead at 93: Butterflies and As Time Goes By star dies peacefully at home

  • The star died peacefully at home and had parts in some of Britain’s best-loved series through the ages
  •  Speaking in 2018 collaborator Dame Judi Dench said he was the ‘naughtiest man I have ever worked with’
  •  He is survived by his wife Sally Green, with whom he had a daughter and a son

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Actor Geoffrey Palmer, known for his roles in such sitcoms as Butterflies, As Time Goes By and The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, has died aged 93.

The veteran star – known for his hangdog features and distinctive voice – passed away peacefully at home.

He had parts in some of Britain’s best-loved series and was once a staple on screens watched by millions of fans.

Younger viewers will remember his turn in the 2014 Paddington film where he played Head Geographer.

His agent said simply in a statement: ‘We regret to sadly announce that the actor Geoffrey Palmer died peacefully at home yesterday aged 93’.

Geoffrey Palmer and his wife Sally at the The Dr Who Christmas Episode premiere in 2007

Geoffrey starred with frequent collaborator Dame Judi Dench in the TV hit As Time Goes By

Geoffrey starred with frequent collaborator Dame Judi Dench in the TV hit As Time Goes By  

He was also known for his role in Butterflies alongside Wendy Craig and Nicholas Lyndhurst

He was also known for his role in Butterflies alongside Wendy Craig and Nicholas Lyndhurst

The veteran star died peacefully at home and had parts in some of Britain's best-loved series

The veteran star died peacefully at home and had parts in some of Britain’s best-loved series

Palmer would reunite with her again in the Madness of Kind George.

Early television roles included appearances in iconic series The Saint, The Avengers and Doctor Who. 

He was born in London in 1927 and did national service with the Royal Marines and trained recruits. 

Palmer starring in Executive Stress in 1986 as his star continued to rise in showbiz

Palmer starring in Executive Stress in 1986 as his star continued to rise in showbiz

Incredibly he qualified as an accountant, but always had a hankering for the stage and his girlfriend persuaded him to sign up with a local dramatic society. 

As Time Goes By saw Palmer play Lionel Hardcastle alongside Dame Judi Dench as Jean Mary Hardcastle in the BBC One romantic sitcom between 1992 and 2005.

Speaking in 2018, Dame Judi said the actor was the ‘naughtiest man I have ever worked with’.

As she presented him with the Oldie Of The Year title during an awards ceremony for The Oldie magazine, she added: ‘I wish wish wish that this was the awards for ‘most promising newcomer’ or maybe even ‘the naughtiest man I ever had the pleasure to work with’, but it’s not.’

‘I’m going to quote Bernard Shaw as he said about Ellen Terry ‘she never seemed old to me’. Well, nor you to me,’ Dame Judi said.

Palmer and Dame Judi also starred together in James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies, which was released in 1997. 

He is survived by his wife Sally Green, with whom he had a daughter and a son. 

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