Inside the tragedy of Vicar of Dibley stars as 6 of the 8 main cast have died in last 8 years

THIS is a look into the tragedy of Vicar of Dibley – as six of the eight main cast members have died in recent years.

The majority of the stars from the much-loved British sitcom have passed away in the last eight years, most recently being Gary Waldhorn who played Councillor David Horton.


Gary's death comes after a string of tragedies for the show since 2014 – which included the deaths of Trevor Peacock, Emma Chambers and John Bluthal.

And the passing of Liz Smith and Roger Lloyd-Pack also shocked fans in the 2010s.

Dawn French and James Fleet – who played Geraldine Granger and Hugo Horton in the BBC sitcom – are the only two actors from the starring cast still here with us.

The final episode of the lockdown edition of The Vicar of Dibley ended with a tribute just before the closing credits reading, "In loving memory of Liz, John, Emma and Roger."

This was paying tribute to the four deceased Dibley cast members up to that point.

But the sad passing of Gary Waldhorn and Trevor Peacock, just 10 months between one another, has brought the awful total to six.

Here is a look at the tragic losses from the much-loved Vicar of Dibley.

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Gary Waldhorn

Vicar of Dibley star Gary Waldhorn tragically died aged 78 on January 10 2022.

The actor, who played Councillor David Horton in the BBC sitcom, sadly passed away, his son announced.

His son Josh said in a statement: "Classically trained, it was the theatre where he truly flourished and he leaves a legacy of entertainment that saw him frequent the boards of Broadway, the West End and our living rooms on the telly!

"He leaves behind his two grandsons, Cooper and Bayley and his son Josh.

"We will all miss him terribly."

Gary was known for his work in British sitcoms, most notably The Vicar of Dibley.

He also played Richard Beamish in All at No 20, and Lionel Bainbridge in Brush Strokes.

Trevor Peacock

Trevor Peacock tragically died aged 89 from a dementia-related illness in March 2021.

Trevor played cheeky Jim Trott in the comedy series alongside the actress between 1994 and 2015.

He was a memorable character on the parish council and famous for his "No no no no" catchphrase.

A statement on behalf of his family said: "Trevor Peacock, actor, writer and song-writer, died aged 89 on the morning of March 8th from a dementia-related illness."

Trevor was diagnosed with dementia in 2009 and later retired from acting after one last appearance on a Vicar of Dibley Comic Relief special in 2015.

In 2017, his family confirmed he was suffering from Alzheimer's disease and had no recollection of starring alongside comedian Dawn French in the much-loved show.

His daughter Sally said at the time: "As a character actor, he has made so many people laugh for such a long time.

"Sadly, now he doesn’t understand why people want to come up to him to talk to him or thank him for his work."

Emma Chambers

Actress Emma Chambers died aged 53 in February 2018.

The British star was best known for her role as Alice Tinker in The Vicar Of Dibley and for her role in the film Notting Hill.

From 1994 to 2007 Emma played the role of Alice in the hit BBC comedy – starring opposite Dawn French.

A statement from her agency said Emma died from natural causes and that she would be “greatly missed”.

It said: “Emma created a wealth of characters and an immense body of work. She brought laughter and joy to many.”

 In December 2020, in a series of shorter 'lockdown' episodes of The Vicar of Dibley, Chambers' character Alice was written out of the sitcom, it being revealed that the character had died of cancer.

John Bluthal

Vicar of Dibley star John Bluthal passed away aged 89 in November 2018.

The actor, who played Frank Pickle in the hit sitcom, died surrounded by his family just over three years ago.

His agent said in a statement: "We’re sad to announce our wonderful client John Bluthal has passed away.

"Our thoughts are with his family at this time.

"John provided us all with years of laughter and entertainment. We will miss John hugely."

John played Frank in the comedy between 1994 and 2007 and was famed for his boring and endless stories.

In one storyline, he came out as gay on the radio – but discovered barely anyone had actually tuned in because they feared he would drone on too much.

John was born in Poland in 1929 and was forced to flee to Austria with his Jewish family in 1938 to escape the Nazis.

He moved to England in 1956 where he began a glittering acting career – landing his first big role as Sid James in Citizen James in the 1960s.

On 22 December 2018, BBC One aired The Vicar of Dibley December 1996 episode "The Christmas Lunch Incident" with a caption at the end remembering Bluthal's death.

Liz Smith

Actress Liz Smith died aged 95 in December 2016.

Confirming the actress passed away on Christmas Eve just five years ago, a family statement read: “The BAFTA award-winning actress Liz Smith has died, on Christmas Eve, at the age of 95.”

She was made a household name in the 1990s when she played the supporting role of Letitia Cropley for seven episodes in The Vicar of Dibley.

In the 1996 Easter Special episode, her character died.

Smith appeared alongside Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter in the 2005 film Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, playing the role of Grandma Georgina.

Roger Lloyd-Pack

Before Dibley, actor Roger was best known for playing Trigger in Only Fools And Horses in the 80s and 90s.

In the much-loved BBC sitcom, Roger Lloyd-Pack played grisly farmer Owen, who was very fond of his cattle and known for his potty mouth.

After that, he became known for playing Barty Crouch in the Harry Potter movies.

Sadly actor Roger passed away in January 2014 of pancreatic cancer.

He was 69 years old.


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