Tony Haygarth: Acting world hails 'fine, subtle' Emmerdale star

Tony Haygarth
Image caption Mr Haygarth, pictured here in Bleak House, played parts in many TV dramas

Tributes have been paid to "kind and gentle" Emmerdale actor Tony Haygarth, who has died at the age of 72.

The Liverpool-born star played Mick Naylor in the soap and also had parts in The Bill and movie Chicken Run.

He was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2014 and died on Friday with his wife, Carol, and two daughters, Becky and Katie, at his side.

Sir Tony Robinson was among those paying tribute, describing him as a "fine, subtle actor".

Katie said her father had a "huge personality" and would regularly "hold the room" with long anecdotes.

Image copyright Haygarth family
Image caption Mr Haygarth leaves behind daughters Katie and Becky
Image caption He starred in The Borrowers in 1993

"Some of the best memories we have of our dad are strolling through fields with our two dogs, him teaching us about wild flowers and insects, and occasionally quoting us Shakespeare," she said.

"Dad treated everyone with the same respect, it didn't matter whether you were eight years old or 100. He had so many beautiful qualities."

Haygarth, who lived in East Peckham, Kent, had a prolific 45-year acting career, making his name in small-screen offerings including Where The Heart Is and I, Claudius as well as turning his hand to dozens of other productions, including Shakespeare plays.

Image caption Haygarth appeared in a 1983 adaptation of Shakespeare's The Two Gentlemen of Verona

He died on the same day as Footballers' Wives star John Forgeham, with whom he had starred in the TV film Ivanhoe.

The pair also appeared at different times in The Ruth Rendell Mysteries, Making Out, Lovejoy and Z Cars.

Also paying respect to Mr Haygarth was Les Dennis who tweeted: "So very sad to hear that the wonderful Tony Haygarth has died. Thoughts with his family."

Marsha Thomason, who starred with him in Where the Heart Is, posted: "I was lucky enough to spend two years working with Tony Haygarth. He had great stories and a wonderful sense of humour. RIP Tony."

Fellow Emmerdale star John Bowe, said: "Au revoir, Tony Haygarth. RIP. My, we had some nights together, Tony. Particularly in Newcastle, as I remember."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Haygarth did the voice for Mr Tweedy in the clay animation comedy Chicken Run

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