Actor Tim Pigott-Smith dies at the age of 70

The actor Tim Pigott-Smith has died at the age of 70, his agent John Grant has said.

"Tim was one of the great actors of his generation. Much-loved and admired by his peers, he will be remembered by many as a gentleman and a true friend," Mr Grant said in a statement.

"He will be much missed. We ask that you respect the privacy of his wife, the actress Pamela Miles, his son Tom and the family."

The actor, who appeared in theatre productions both in the West End and on Broadway, received an OBE for services to drama from Prince William last month.

He has been seen on TV recently as Mr Sniggs in the BBC's adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's novel Decline and Fall.

Downton Abbey, Lewis, Silent Witness and Miranda were among other productions he appeared in.

Speaking last month, he said that his role as a racist police superintendent, Merrick, in ITV's The Jewel In The Crown had been very important, commenting: "That's the one that changed my life, a long time ago now, 1984, just in terms of a life experience and a job experience, quite phenomenal.

"It really was an international event, it went everywhere."

He had movie roles in Martin Scorsese's Gangs Of New York, The Remains Of The Day, and the Bond film Quantum Of Solace.

Tim Pigott-Smith was born in Rugby and trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.

He had finished working on several films, including a drama about the hostage situation at the Iranian embassy in London in 1980, called 6 Days.

He is survived by his wife Pamela Miles and their son Tom.

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