Bernard Cribbins, 'Doctor Who' Actor, Dead at 93

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Bernard Cribbins, seasoned actor who played the role of Wilfred Mott in Doctor Who, died on Thursday morning. The actor was 93.

Agent Gavin Barker Associates announced the news, though no official cause of death has been disclosed. “Bernard’s contribution to British entertainment is without question,” the statement said. “He was unique, typifying the best of his generation, and will be greatly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing and working with him.”

Born in England, his lengthy career spanned seven decades. The actor got his start by starring in theatre debuts, followed by a string of appearances in children's programs such as The Wombles, TV storytelling series Jackanory, and BBC's Old Jack’s Boat in later years.

1970's The Railway Children, where Cribbins played character Albert Perks, is widely regarded as the best children’s movie made in Britain.

He also saw success in music, having recorded and performed comedy songs. Among them were top 10 hits “Hole in the Ground” and “Right Said Fred.”

“I love this man. I love him,” Doctor Who showrunner Russell T. Davies wrote in an Instagram post honoring Cribbins. “He loved being in Doctor Who. He said, ‘Children are calling me grandad in the street!’ His first day was on location with Kylie Minogue, but all eyes, even Kylie’s, were on Bernard. He’d turned up with a suitcase full of props, just in case, including a rubber chicken. And what an actor. Oh, really though, what a wonderful actor," he recalled.

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The show runner continued on, mentioning the apparent adoration he had for his wife of 66 years, Gillian, who passed away last year. "He loved Gill with all his heart; he mentioned her in every conversation we ever had. A love story for the ages," Davies gushed.

He then added being “so lucky to have known him,” closing his statement with a note of sincere gratitude. “Thanks for everything, my old soldier. A legend has left the world.”

The official Doctor Who Twitter account also posted the following statement: “We are extremely saddened to learn of the passing of Bernard Cribbins. Known best to Doctor Who fans as the Doctor’s friend and Donna’s grandad Wilfred Mott, Bernard leaves behind a long legacy in film and TV.”

In 2009, the beloved actor was presented with the BAFTA Special Award at the EA British Academy Children’s Awards, along with the honor of an OBE (Order of the British Empire) for services to drama two years later.

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