Freddie Starr Comedian dies at 76
Freddie Starr was found dead in his spanish home.
The comedian, who rose to fame after appearing on TV show Opportunity Knocks in the 1970s, has died at the age of 76.
The comedian and lead singer of Merseybeat pop group the Midniters has been found dead at his Spanish home.
The star’s body was discovered on the floor of his Costa Del Sol apartment.
A neighbour, who asked not to be named, told the Mirror: “His carer found him dead in his chair at around 3.30pm.
“Police arrived first and then later an ambulance arrived and he was taken away.
“His next door neighbour who is a nurse said he was definitely dead. She said she thinks he may have suffered a heart attack.”
Another neighbour added: “He’s been quite ill ever since he moved in and has barely left his apartment since moving in a couple of years ago.
“He would just sit indoors all day long and he never had any visitors. It’s so tragic.”
ONE OF HIS LAST APPEARANCES: FREDDIE STARR WALKS OUT OF GMB INTERVIEW
Freddie rose to fame in the early 1970s after appearing on TV show Opportunity Knocks and the Royal Variety Performance.
He went on to star in a number of his own TV shows, including The Freddie Starr Show and An Audience with Freddie Starr.
Freddie also presented game show Beat The Crusher and appeared on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! in 2011.
He appeared on the reality show just one year after recovering from quadruple bypass surgery following a heart attack.
He was famously axed from the show after collapsing, amid reports producers feared he could die on the show.
The comic was also the subject of one of the best known British tabloid headlines of all time.
A story ran in The Sun on March 13, 1986, entitled ‘Freddie Starr ate my hamster’.
According to the story, Freddie returned to the home of a friend he was staying with after a performance at a Manchester night club and demanded that a sandwich was made for him.
It’s claimed that when his request was refused, Freddie grabbed the woman’s pet hamster, put it between two slices of bread and ate it.
He denied it all, writing in his autobiography Unwrapped: “I have never eaten or even nibbled a live hamster, gerbil, guinea pig, mouse, shrew, vole or any other small mammal”.
In the 70s and 80s he was amongst the highest paid stars on television alongside other working-class comics such as Frank Carson, Benny Hill, Bernard Manning and Jim Davidson.
But his career tailed of in the 90s and after comeback attempts on shows like I’m A Celebrity, Freddie hit the headlines and has been plagued by allegations of sex abuse and groping during his career as part of Operation Yewtree which he said made him consider suicide.
A local paramedics source said: “We received a call from the carer of a 76-year-old man around 5.10pm this afternoon local time from an address in a residential area known as Urb. Mijas Golf.
“She said she had found him and she was looking after him because he had been ill and could be dead.
“Medical responders were dispatched but I do not know what happened subsequently at this stage and if the man was confirmed dead at the scene or not.”