Keith Chegwin has sadly passed away aged 60 at home. The veteran TV star, who was best known for hosting children's game show Cheggers Plays Pop and Swap Shop, had endured a "long-term battle with a progressive lung condition". On Monday, his family announced the news, saying they are "heartbroken" at the loss. The statement read: "We are heartbroken to share the news that Keith Chegwin sadly passed away following a long-term battle with a progressive lung condition, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, which rapidly worsened towards the end of this year."
They said Keith died peacefully at home just after midnight on Monday, with his wife Maria, daughter Rose and son Ted by his side. The statement continued: "We would like to take this opportunity to thank Severn Hospice for the kindness, support and care they have shown us all over the last few weeks. Keith was a loving husband, father, son, brother, uncle and friend. We would respectfully ask to be left to mourn his passing in private."
Keith passed away at home aged 60
A host of stars have expressed their sadness, with Lorraine Kelly writing: "Very sad to hear about the death of Keith Chegwin. A kind, funny, brave man who seized the day." This Morning host Phillip Schofield tweeted: "I'm so stunned to hear that the utterly lovely @keithchegwin has died. Can't get my head round this. One of my original Saturday morning heroes. Sending all my love to his family."
"Such sad news. Very much a part of my childhood. RIP Keith Chegwin," Paddy McGuinness wrote. Tony Blackburn also paid tribute, writing: "I'm absolutely devastated to hear that my friend Keith Chegwin has died. He was one of the nicest people I have ever known and over the years we did shows together and became great friends. Keith RIP." Frank Bruno shared a photo of the pair and captioned it: "Saddened to hear this,what a great guy! I worked with him a lot over the years a great entertainer,you will be missed RIP Keith Chegwin."
Keith was previously married to fellow TV host Maggie Philbin, the mother of his daughter Rose who he met on Swap Shop. Maggie said: "It is incredibly sad. Keith was a one-off. Full of life, generous and with a focus on things that mattered – his family. I saw him two months ago at his sister Janice's wedding, where he was still attempting to be life and soul of the party despite being on portable oxygen and made sure he knew how much he meant to us all."
She revealed: "Our daughter Rose flew home from San Francisco to be with him over the last few weeks and I know he was surrounded by so much love from his second wife Maria, their son Ted, his sister Janice, his twin brother Jeff and his father Colin."