Magician Paul Daniels Dies From Brain Tumour

Magician Paul Daniels Dies From Brain Tumour

Television magician Paul Daniels died aged 77 after being diagnosed with a brain tumour.

The television star was released from hospital last week after being told that the tumour was incurable.

On 7 March, Daniels' wife Debbie McGee said the family had been inundated with "wonderful messages " of support from fans and friends.

The tumour was found when the entertainer fell and was rushed to hospital suspected of suffering a stroke.

Daniels was at his Berkshire home with McGee when he died in the early hours of Thursday.

Paying tribute to her husband, she said they had had a "fairytale life" together.

His wife of 28 years told the BBC: "The way to describe Paul was that, yes he did television shows and people knew who he was and he did shows for royalty and we flew around the world.

"You know we had a fairytale life and we were so happy together.

"But Paul as a person was like in the village, in the queue for the post office, either doing tricks on them or making them all laugh.

"And he was as happy doing that as he was walking on stage at the Palladium or doing a TV show or doing a show for the Royal Family. He loved people. He was interested in everybody."

She added: "Our life has been full of laughter and that's what it's been the last few weeks. Up until the last 48 hours when he slipped into a sleep."

Daniels' son Gary tweeted to confirm his father's death alongside a picture of a crying white rabbit in a magician's black top hat.

:: Read the tributes to Paul Daniels here

One of the most popular magicians of the 20th century, his success was unrivalled in the magic and entertainment world.

His wit, charm, and magic skills earned him a reputation which meant that he performed for Princes William and Harry, Prime Ministers John Major and James Callaghan, Prince Rainier of Monaco and others.

Born in South Bank, Middlesbrough as Newton Edward Daniels, the TV personality's interest in magic began aged 11 when he read a book called How To Entertain At Parties.

After serving as a conscript with the 1st Battalion, the Green Howards, in Hong Kong he started working in clubs where he developed his famous catchphrase: "You'll like this ... not a lot, but you'll like it."

He made his television debut on Opportunity Knocks in 1970 where he came second.

ITV gave him his own show in 1978 and he moved to the BBC the following year with The Paul Daniels Magic Show which attracted 15 million viewers in the UK and ran until 1994.

Daniels also starred in his own stage show called It's Magic which became one of London's longest-running magic shows in the 1980s.

It was at this time that he met his second wife McGee, whose role as his assistant became a major feature of his act and the couple married in 1988.

In 1987 Daniels hosted a controversial Halloween live special where he replicated a trick called the Iron Maiden. It was deliberately staged to look as though it had gone wrong and that he had been killed.

Dozens of people complained to the BBC when the credits rolled but he later made an appearance between programmes to show he had successfully escaped from the device.

In his later years, Daniels and his wife toured the country with magic and comedy shows, entertaining old fans and new generations alike with his skills.

He had three sons with his first wife Jacqueline Skipworth. His youngest son Martin regularly appeared on his TV shows and is now an entertainer himself.