Thursday 19 October 2017

Goodbye to Nana as 'Royle Family' co-star tells of 'awful year'

Royle Family actress Liz Smith died on December 27 at 96. Photo: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
Royle Family actress Liz Smith died on December 27 at 96. Photo: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Catherine Wylie

'Royle Family' star Liz Smith has died at the age of 95.

The actress, who played the ailing Nana in the hit comedy show, died on Christmas Eve.

Her death comes in the same year as her co-star Caroline Aherne, who died from lung cancer.

The Royle Family actor Ralf Little tweeted: "Devastating to lose two members of my second family in one awful year. RIP Liz Smith. Goodbye Nana. Xxx"

'The Queen of Sheba' - the episode of the much-loved sitcom in which Nana dies - was repeated on the BBC days before Christmas.

In 2009, the Prince of Wales presented Smith with an MBE and told her that the sofa-bound TV characters in the show were "nothing like my family, thank God".

Smith only got her first professional roles in her 50s when Mike Leigh was looking for a middle-aged woman capable of improvisation for his debut feature 'Bleak Moments'.

The actress also played eccentric baker Letitia Cropley in 'The Vicar Of Dibley'. At the age of 85 she won a best actress award at the British Comedy Awards for her portrayal of Nana.

Irish Independent

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