Actress Liz Smith has passed away, aged 95.
A veteran comedy performer, Smith is best known for her role as Nana in The Royle Family, but also had recurring roles in The Vicar of Dibley and Lark Rise to Candleford. She was awarded an MBE in 2009, and won a BAFTA for Supporting Actress in the 1984 film, A Private Function.
Her death comes just six months after the death of her Royle Family co-star, Caroline Aherne, who passed away aged 52 in June. Smith played the grandmother of Aherne’s character, Denise, on the show. The memorable 2006 Christmas Special which revived the show after six years off-air saw Nana’s sad demise, in some of the most emotional scenes in British sitcom history.
Ralf Little, a fellow co-star of Smith’s in The Royle Family, tweeted: “Devastating to lose two members of my second family in one awful year. RIP Liz Smith. Goodbye Nana. Xxx”.
Smith served in the Woman’s Royal Naval Service during the Second World War, was a single mother to two children, and remained active in her career until just three years ago, when she retired from acting aged 92.