The Likely Lads star Rodney Bewes dies aged 79

November 21st, 20177:25 pm @

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  • Star of hit Seventies sitcom The Likely Lads, Rodney Bewes has died aged 79
  • Rodney Bewes played the aspirational Bob Ferris in the famous British comedy
  • At its peak, Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? pulled in 27 million viewers 
  • His agent said: ‘Rodney was a true one off. We will miss his charm and ready wit’ 

Rod Ardehali For Mailonline

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British comedy legend Rodney Bewes, who starred in the hit Seventies sitcom Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? has died aged 79

British comedy legend Rodney Bewes, who starred in the hit Seventies sitcom Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? has died aged 79

British comedy legend Rodney Bewes, who starred in the hit Seventies sitcom Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads?, has died aged 79.

Bewes played the aspirational Bob Ferris in the popular Newcastle upon Tyne based comedy, alongside James Bolam who played the other Likely Lad, Terry Collier.

Despite appearing close on-screen, the pair hadn’t spoken to each other for almost 40 years. 

The fall out came after Bewes revealed to a reporter than Bolam’s wife was pregnant – enraging his fiercely private co-star.

The original black-and-white Likely Lads ran for three series’ between 16 December 1964 and 23 July 1966, following the lives of two working class men from the North East.

It was followed in the Seventies by the more popular sequel Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? broadcast between January 1973 and December 1974. 

Rodney played the aspirational Bob Ferris (right) in the popular Newcastle upon Tyne based comedy, alongside James Bolam who played the other Likely Lad, Terry Collier (left)

Rodney played the aspirational Bob Ferris (right) in the popular Newcastle upon Tyne based comedy, alongside James Bolam who played the other Likely Lad, Terry Collier (left)

Reflecting Britain’s growing class tensions the time, Bob played a socially aspirational factory worker alongside his childhood friend Terry, a cynical everyman stuck in his ways.

It came against a backdrop of a period of almost continuous industrial strife in Britain at the time. 

At its peak in the mid 1970s, the show pulled in 27 million viewers. 

Bewes played the aspirational Bob Ferris in the popular Newcastle upon Tyne based comedy, alongside James Bolam who played the other Likely Lad, Terry Collier 

Bewes played the aspirational Bob Ferris in the popular Newcastle upon Tyne based comedy, alongside James Bolam who played the other Likely Lad, Terry Collier 

In a statement, his agent confirmed: ‘It is with great sadness that we confirm that our dear client, the much loved actor Rodney Bewes, passed away this morning. 

‘Rodney was a true one off. We will miss his charm and ready wit.’

Bewes was born in Bingley in Yorkshire but moved to Luton as a child.

He is survived by his four children – Billy, Joe, Tom and Daisy – and two grandchildren, Oscar and Eliza.  


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