'Eggheads' star David Rainford dies, Jeremy Vine and Paul Sinha among tributes

David Rainford had competed on Eggheads since 2012. (BBC)

David Rainford, one of the star’s of BBC Two’s Eggheads, has died aged 51.

The Manchester quizzer, who was nicknamed 'Tremendous Knowledge', was one of the show's titular Eggheads since 2012.

The show’s presenter Jeremy Vine shared the sad news with his Twitter followers on Saturday afternoon.

Vine wrote: "I'm very sad to hear that one of the Eggheads has died. Dave “Tremendous Knowledge” Rainford, famous for being banned from pub quiz machines in Manchester, was the best company after a recording: always fun and sociable. I never saw him angry or ungenerous, not once. RIP."

While former Egghead CJ de Mooi commented: “I’ve just been informed that Dave Rainford (from a certain quiz show we used to appear on together) has died. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. RIP Dave.”

Carla Maria-Lawson, Head of BBC Daytime and Early Peak said: “We’re very sorry to hear of the passing of Dave Rainford who was a phenomenal quizzing force on Eggheads. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.”

Other UK quiz stars also shared their condolences, including The Chase stars Paul Sinha and Anne Hegerty.

"Devastated at the loss of my friend, David Rainford. Egghead, great bloke, great friend. We had blindingly good nights out mate. X," Sinha wrote.

While Hegerty posted: "Very sad to learn that Tremendous Knowledge Dave Rainford of #Eggheads has died. One of the nicest people I ever knew. Never a bad word about anyone."

Yahoo News UK has contacted the BBC for comment.

Prior to his stint on the BBC quiz show, Rainford had competed on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? in 2005, and walked away with £250,000.

Last year, fans noticed Rainford was absent for some episodes with the star confirming he hadn't been able to film due to an undisclosed illness.

He shared in a tweet: "Brand new Eggheads starting on Monday. I was still recuperating when these programmes were recorded, but I can promise you that there are some great shows coming up with excellent challengers that will keep you on the edge of your seats. Keep watching."