BBC to pay tribute to Paul O'Grady with Lily Savage Blankety Blank special broadcast

Broadcaster will air a classic episode of Blankety Blank hosted by Lily savage in a schedule shake up

Paul O'Grady as Lily Savage hosting Blankety Blank. (Fremantle Media/Shutterstock)
Paul O'Grady as Lily Savage hosting Blankety Blank. (Fremantle Media/Shutterstock)

BBC One will pay tribute to Paul O'Grady this weekend with a special broadcast of a classic episode of Blankety Blank.

The advertised schedule will be changed to accomodate the instalment of the hit family game show which will see O'Grady star as his alter ego Lily Savage alongside guests Rebecca Callard, Sophie Lawrence, Davina McCall, Sir Ian McKellen, Gray O’Brien and Dale Winton.

O'Grady originally hosted the show on BBC One from 6 December, 1997 to 28 December, 1999.

Read more: Paul O'Grady died in bed beside husband

He then moved to ITV under the new title Lily Savage's Blankety Blank from 7 January, 2001 to 10 August, 2002.

The announcement follows confirmation from ITV that they will air a special broadcast to honour the late TV presenter on Sunday, 2 April, titled For the Love of Paul O'Grady.

It has also been announced that the 11th series of Paul O'Grady: For the Love of Dogs will go to air as planned on Thursday, 13 April at 8.30pm.

Watch: Paul O'Grady dies aged 67 after glittering showbiz career

O'Grady sadly passed away unexpectedly on Tuesday (28 March) at the age of 67.

A friend of the star confirmed that he died in bed next to his husband Andre Portasio, 41.

Linda Thorson told Good Morning Britain: “He died in his own bed. His husband was there, Andre, who has been with for so many years.

Read more: My night out with Lily Savage: Remembering the brilliance of Paul O’Grady

"The most divine man, he is only 41, Andre, he will be so bereft of Paul, he worshipped Paul."

A statement from Portasio — who married O'Grady in 2017 — confirmed that he had passed away as he thanked his fans for their love and support.

He said: "It is with great sadness that I inform you that Paul has passed away unexpectedly but peacefully yesterday evening.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 22: Paul O'Grady and Andre Portasio attend the National Television Awards held at The O2 Arena on January 22, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Joe Maher/WireImage)
Paul O'Grady passed away in bed beside husband Andre Portasio (WireImage)

"He will be greatly missed by his loved ones, friends, family, animals and all those who enjoyed his humour, wit and compassion.

"I know that he would want me to thank you for all the love you have shown him over the years."

Lily Savage’s Blankety Blank will be broadcast on Saturday, 1 April, 2023, at 7pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.