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RIP Paul Darrow
The very heart and soul of Blake's 7 is torn through today.
Rest in peace, Paul. Forever Avon.

My deepest condolences to his friends and family, and all of you here.
I am very sad to hear this news, he was my childhood hero.
Space Chopper
Saw this in the paper this morning, and it was like being punched in the stomach. I just don't know what to say, other than yet another figure from my childhood has now gone forever. I really wish I could have met him, there's no point for me to even try to go to any cons now. utterly gutted, and may you rest in peace.

"I am not expendable, I'm not stupid, and I'm not going."
Vila: "I plan to live forever- or die trying..."
I am so shocked and so sad. He was my first anti-hero as I grew up and no other actor has since come close to portraying the eclectic mix of menace and enigma that he so brilliantly portrayed as Avon - he really was the villain we all loved to love. I feel lucky to have met him twice in recent years (he even remembered me the second time) - charming, chatty and charismatic...the sparkiest of souls.
I read through today's Daily mail and The Sun but couldn't find an obit there. I'm much more hopeful that Radio 4's The Last World will have a fitting tribute this coming Sunday.
I picked up my phone yesterday; a text from a friend; I was busy and didn't read it immediately. The message gently informed me Paul had passed away. I couldn't process it; I was alone, at home, working on my laptop and kept on working as tears started falling. Paul has been a part of my life since 1978 - I was thirteen and fell hook, line and sinker for Kerr Avon. But there, on my phone, indisputable, the news that he had passed away - the news I never wanted to hear.

I barely processed his death as the evening progressed; and found it impossible to write here on the forum. I did read the messages posted; I know we are all heartbroken and feeling the same emotions; tears falling at the drop of a hat throughout a night in which I slept badly.

I can still scarcely conceive he is no longer with us; moving forward without Paul Darrow in the world isn't a fact my mind wants to accept. He's been a constant all these decades. But as is the way with death; it snatches when least expected, lurking in the shadows, ready to pounce like a taunting jack-in-the-box.

Paul's place in my heart is eternal: it's surreal, this news, accepting we will never watch him taking centre stage, microphone and audience in the palm of his hand, as it has always been since we first watched him as Avon on the London. I will accept it; it's familiar, and yet my inner child - thirteen year old me, wants to curl into a ball; denial rather than the cold truth.

So many memories, over so many decades.

Last night I kept mentally returning to Paul's autobiography and his humorous reference to the BBC dedicating an "...episode to the recently deceased Paul Darrow. The episode is entitled: The Way Back."

His biography is perhaps the greatest testimony to his writing talents. He likewise mentions in his book that at his passing, 'people will hawk photos of how I used to look.' I'm paraphrasing; he may have mentioned E bay!

But this was his sense of humour; witty, irreverent ... intelligence threaded in every word he uttered. I intend re-listening to the audio version of his autobiography - it's been a while and I need to hear those rich tones, delivered in his familiar inimitable style.

I recently read a quote from Tom Baker which I think perfectly summarises how the fandom feels - it's too soon to use past tense - about Paul. During an interview Tom talks about 'the purity of fan love, how it's an uncorruptible thing and it's much more powerful than ordinary love.'

My soul aches for the man and the actor, a brilliant talent on the screen and in theatre; professionally underrated, whilst beloved by the fandom. Embellishments were never required; Paul entertained as he lived: charming in every possible way.

There is more to say, but that's for another time; for now I want to finish with a smile; albeit a watery one, thinking about Paul, drinking fine wine in heaven, alongside Janet, Jacqueline, Gareth and all those we've lost from within the Blake's 7 family.
Edited by Mistletoe12 on 04 June 2019 13:06:10
That's lovely @mistletoe12
Most of you know that Paul Darrow has been the Voice of Jack on idents for Oxfordshire’s Jack FM (and Union Jack Radio online) since its inception 11 years ago. Jack FM have dedicated the 4th June podcast to him. It’s a breakfast show, so there’s a lot of silliness, but it’s got some lovely stuff from people who worked with Paul regularly, and some recordings they made of Paul himself.

In case you can’t stand breakfast radio, here’s a guide to the Paul-related bits:

04:00 - 10:00 Introduction, ident, reminiscences about recording with Paul, recordings of Paul talking about how he came to work with Jack, and on B7, reaction from the internet, bumper
14:00 - 15:33 Ident, tease, ident
16:40 - 24:00 Ident, reminiscences about recording with Paul, recording of Paul corpsing during an ident recording, recording of Paul talking about waking up after losing his legs, ident, tease
26:15 - 31:00 Package including candid recordings of Paul, audio from B7, ident, tease.
32:30 Just an ident
34:09 - 34:45 Ident and listener reaction
36:20 Just an ident
37:33 - 43:21 Ident, reminiscences, listener reaction, a short recording of Paul about B7, ident.
44:36 Just an ident
44:57 - 48:28 Reminiscences, including recordings from Paul about his illness in 2014.
Space Chopper
briggsy1 wrote:

I read through today's Daily mail and The Sun but couldn't find an obit there. I'm much more hopeful that Radio 4's The Last World will have a fitting tribute this coming Sunday.

Here's the link to the Daily Mail article that I spotted.

Vila: "I plan to live forever- or die trying..."
As I walked around RAF Cosgrove this morning, looking at all the planes, I kept seeing the name Avon..on planes, engines, tyres. Usually I take pictures...this time I could hardly lift my camera. All that kept going through my mind were the words that he often said to me whenever I arrived at his table at Comicons etc..."Oh no...not you!"
It was an ongoing thing since I had met him again in 2012 at The Cult Event and Daughter No. 2 had waylaid him in a corridor and demanded...er, asked if he would be so kind as to have a picture taken with me. This he did, twice, after Sarah barked 'Smile!' at him!!!
So at long last I had a photo of me with him, even though we had first met at Teal Vandor in 1981 and for several years after that and I had never had one taken with him!
After 2012, I would often travel to various places, even to the Space Centre, and it was there that Hubby made his aquintance. They both commiserated which each other! "I'm sooo sorry' said Paul to Dearest, leaning across me and tapping Norm's shoulder!!!
"Oh no...it's you" started at Brighton Comicon...and carried on to the Blake event!
There have been 2 men in my life for almost 44 years...one has now gone.......
Cold.....you don't know the meaning of cold.
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of the window!!!

sues stories http://sjlittle.w...
sues youtube channel http://www.youtub...e54/videos
sues book shelf https://www.media...ne%20Shelf
rebel run video http://www.youtub...prqS-XZtLo
Lara and Sue's Stories http://lectorisal....webs.com/
Space Chopper wrote:

briggsy1 wrote:

I read through today's Daily mail and The Sun but couldn't find an obit there. I'm much more hopeful that Radio 4's The Last World will have a fitting tribute this coming Sunday.

Here's the link to the Daily Mail article that I spotted.


Thanks for the link. The article mentions Paul made over 200 tv appearances during his career - I would never have guessed it was that many! Which makes me think with regret that I only saw a small fraction of them.
RIP to a great actor I was hoping to meet him at the collectormania convention that was on last weekend. Just read a tribute on the forum sums up Paul absolutely brilliantly. Will definitely watch some episodes of Blake's 7 in tribute to a great actor
Andrew beet
Great tribute mistletoe 12
Andrew beet
Sad,sad news. RIP Paul.
Not quite sure what to say. Lovely guy, was lucky enough to meet him several times. He always had time for everyone, even seeking me out when l was too shy to talk to him one night many years ago in Bristol. A big part of my childhood, Blake's 7 and particularly Avon have been with me for a long time. I'll miss the anticipation of the new Audio Adventures (the Avon one's were always my favourite!). We'll always have the video and audio to remind us, but it's not quite the same. RIP.
I found a music video made by a YouTube user known as The Inedible Dormouse, featuring Paul Darrow's best moments as Avon and set to Elvis's version of "My Way". You can watch it here: https://www.youtu...sek2oh7V9s
Thanks for posting that, Sweevo.
Zil: Oneness must resist the Host.
geri d
Heard the sad news only this evening. I had the pleasure of meeting Paul at a convention in Stoke on Trent a few years ago, and I still have the photo he signed for me. RIP Paul, you will be missed.
So shocked. After losing Gareth and Jacqueline in recent times and now Paul, I feel as if Blake’s 7 has just died.
Really sad news about Paul Darrow. I once saw him on stage in Oxford playing Elvis in "Are You Lonesome Tonight ?" - script by Alan Bleasdale as I recall. He sang "You Were Always On My Mind" (or if he mimed, it was certainly to his own voice recording). Really great stuff.

After the show my friends and I waited outside backstage. I noticed two really shy looking women over the road and asked them if they were there to see Paul Darrow. One said "Yes" so I invited them to come over and join us, but - and this is totally true - she said "No it's okay, we need this wall for support". Darrow emerged with a friend and was understandably in a bit of a rush as he was quite hungry after the show, but a total gentleman.

In a way of thinking, maybe cantankerous at my age, but all the good things seem to be slipping away and being replaced by either bad things or just a void. RIP Paul.
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