Emmerdale star Richard Howard dies aged 79 after a ‘short illness’ as his agents pay tribute to the actor following a long TV and theatre career

Richard Howard has died at the age of 79.

The veteran stage actor had a long career in the theatre and had also featured in Emmerdale but passed away after a ‘short illness’, his agents have confirmed.

On Monday, Scott Marshall Partners said in a statement: ‘It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our beloved client, Richard Howard, at the age of 79, after a short illness.

‘He is survived by his son, three stepdaughters and nine grandchildren.’

Richard worked as a civil servant before going on to train at the prestigious Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.

Richard Howard has died at the age of 79, his agents confirmed on Monday (pictured in an episode of Agatha Christie’s Poirot titled Four And Twenty Blackbirds in 1989)

Some of his stage work included playing Sir Robert de Lesseps in the original cast of historical fiction Shakespeare In Love – an adaption of the 1998 film – at the Noel Coward Theatre.

On television, Richard appeared as Rev. Bob Jerome on the ITV1 soap opera Emmerdale in the days when it was still known as Emmerdale Farm during the late 1970s.

He later starred in an episode of Agatha Christie’s Poirot titled Four And Twenty Blackbirds in 1989.

He also appeared in a BBC adaptation of David Copperfield, which marked the screen debut of Daniel Radcliffe just before he caught the attention of ‘Harry Potter’ casting directors and was propelled to worldwide fame through his role as the titular boy wizard.

The actor was also in Stanley at the National Theatre, which was about the life of painter Sir Stanley Spencer and won an Olivier for best new play in 1997.

He was also in a Kiln Theatre adaption of James Baldwin’s play about racial oppression in the US called Blues For Mr Charlie. 

Richard’s latter credits included an episode of Born and Bred in 2003, an uncredited role in The Government Inspector in 2005 and an episode in TV miniseries The Invisibles in 2009.

He also appeared in BBC Radio 4 play The People’s Princess about George IV’s wife Caroline of Brunswick.

The veteran stage actor had a long career in the theatre and had also featured in Emmerdale but passed away after a 'short illness', his agents have confirmed (Richard pictured as Rev. Bob Jerome alongside the late Barbara Bolton, who played Jane Moorcock in Emmerdale Farm in 1980)

The veteran stage actor had a long career in the theatre and had also featured in Emmerdale but passed away after a ‘short illness’, his agents have confirmed (Richard pictured as Rev. Bob Jerome alongside the late Barbara Bolton, who played Jane Moorcock in Emmerdale Farm in 1980)

His last appearance was as PC Davies in the short film Daydreams and Fairytales in 2010. 

He was part of the Stables Theatre Club in Manchester, and Brian Friel and Stephen Rea’s theatre company Field Day.

‘Howard acted and directed with the Jill Freud Theatre Company for many seasons, and was a member of the London Shakespeare Group,’ his agent said. 

Outside of his TV career, Richard taught at his alma mater as well as at the and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London.

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