charles spencer john challis

Charles Spencer shares sorrow following death of actor John Challis at 79

The Only Fools and Horses star's death was announced on Sunday

Diane Shipley

Charles Spencer was among those who knew John Challis to pay tribute to the late Only Fools and Horses actor, who has sadly died at the age of 79.

Princess Diana's brother took to Twitter, where he shared a heartfelt message in honour of the beloved star, who was best known for playing Terrance "Boycie" Boyce on the iconic sitcom.

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Charles revealed his friendly relationship with the performer as he wrote: "So very sorry to learn of the death of @BeingBoycie. John was wonderful – kind, intelligent & deeply thoughtful. An absolute gentleman."

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He went on: "We got to know each other several years ago, and last 'spoke' via Twitter a couple of weeks back, when he must have known how ill he was. RIP."

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The Earl's followers were quick to share their sympathy, with one writing: "I was very shocked and saddened to hear of this. A brilliant actor who will be greatly missed."

charles spencer twitter tribute

Charles paid moving tribute to the late actor 

Another replied: "Only Fools and Horses was and still is, one of my favourite shows to come out of the UK… My condolences to you and to his family and loved ones."

A third commented: "Oh that’s both so lovely and so sad! What a cherished moment that conversation has now become."

John's death was announced on Sunday afternoon by his family, who said that the actor had died "peacefully, in his sleep" from cancer.

john challis yellow car

John was best known for Only Fools and Horses 

He was a mainstay in Only Fools from 1981 to its final in 2003 and went on to star in spin-off The Green Green Grass between 2005 and 2009.

More recently, he was a regular in ITV's Benidorm. In their statement, his family said: "He will always be loved for being 'Boycie' and leaves a great legacy of work that will continue to bring pleasure and smiles for many years to come.

"Be assured that in the future there will be an occasion to celebrate John's life - when everyone will be welcome to come along."

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