Veteran BBC broadcaster Terry Wogan has died aged 77 after a short battle with cancer, his family has announced.
In a statement released this morning (Jan 31) they said, “Sir Terry Wogan died today after a short but brave battle with cancer.
“He passed away surrounded by his family. While we understand he will be missed by many, the family ask that their privacy is respected at this time.”
Limerick-born Wogan enjoyed a hugely successful, 50-year career both in television and as a radio host, spent mostly at the BBC.
He is best remembered as the face of Children In Need, the voice of Eurovision and longtime host of his own BBC1 chat show, Wogan, which stopped airing in 1992 after a 10-year stint.
BBC director general Tony Hall paid tribute to Wogan, saying, “Terry truly was a national treasure. He was a lovely, lovely man and our thoughts are with his wife and family.
“For 50 years, Sir Terry graced our screens and airwaves. His warmth, wit and geniality meant that for millions he was a part of the family,” he added.
Prime Minister David Cameron also paid tribute to the broadcaster. He said, “My thoughts are with Terry Wogan’s family. Britain has lost a huge talent – someone millions came to feel was their own special friend.”
He added, “I grew up listening to him on the radio and watching him on TV. His charm and wit always made me smile.”
BBC Radio 2 controller Bob Shennan said he was “one of the greatest and most popular radio hosts this country has ever heard”, adding: “His millions of listeners adored him, as did his whole Radio 2 family. We will miss him enormously and our thoughts at this very sad time are with Helen and all the family.”
Sir Terry leaves wife Lady Helen and their three children. The couple also had a daughter who died in infancy.