Gavin and Stacey's Ruth Jones leads tributes following sad death of Kay Mellor

Kay Mellor helped launch the careers of Ruth Jones and James Corden

Ruth Jones has paid tribute to the late TV writer Kay Mellor following her sad death aged 71. Kay was the writer and creator of the popular series, Fat Friends, which starred Ruth as one of the leading roles alongside James Corden between 2000 and 2005 before they found fame with their own show Gavin and Stacey.

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Soon after the news of Kay's passing was announced, Ruth released a statement expressing her shock and sadness over the news.

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"I am completely shocked to hear the news of Kay's untimely death. Her contribution to British television was outstanding and I feel privileged to have worked with her," she said to PA.

"Such a down-to-earth, funny, big-hearted person whose brilliance lay in seeing the extraordinary in the day to day. She was a great mentor to me when I first started writing - and always hugely encouraging of new writers - a real testament to the idea of paying it forward.

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Kay Mellor died on Sunday aged 71

"Her series Fat Friends was a massive turning point in my career and I will be eternally grateful to her for what she did for me. British television has lost one of its greats. Thank you Kay for all that you gave us. I cannot believe you've gone."

Kay passed away on Sunday aged 71 and the news was confirmed in a statement released by her TV production company, Rollem Productions. " It is with profound sadness that we announce the untimely and sudden passing of our beloved friend, mentor and colleague Kay Mellor on Sunday May 15 2022.

Kay wrote Fat Friends which starred Ruth Jones, James Corden and Alison Steadman

"We have lost a phenomenal talent and a true luminary. We ask that you please respect the privacy of the family and friends at this time." Kay enjoyed huge success throughout her career and also penned hit shows such as Girlfriend, The Syndicate and Band of Gold. 

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