English comedian and actor Sean Lock has died at the age of 58.
The former 8 Out of 10 Cats and standup comedian, who was a regular panelist on TV shows including Have I Got News For You, Would I Lie To You? and QI, had been suffering from cancer.
He was best known for being the team captain on Channel 4 series 8 Out of 10 Cats, presented by Jimmy Carr, for 10 years from 2005. He was replaced by Rob Beckett in 2016.
Comedian Lee Mack, who was a close friend of Lock’s, shared a statement in tribute to his fellow comic, hailing him as “a true original both in comedy and life”.
He described the news as “heartbreaking”, adding: “I will miss him so much.”
A statement from Lock’s agent, Off The Kerb Productions, said: “It is with great sadness that we have to announce the death of Sean Lock. He died at home from cancer, surrounded by his family.
“Sean was one of Britain’s finest comedians, his boundless creativity, lightning wit and the absurdist brilliance of his work, marked him out as a unique voice in British comedy.
“Sean was also a cherished husband and father to three children. Sean will be sorely missed by all that knew him. We kindly request that the privacy of his family and children is respected at this difficult time.”
Lock was diagnosed with skin cancer in 1990 and attributed the condition to overexposure to the sun while working as a builder in the early 1980s. He became aware of the symptoms after spending the night with a woman named Tina, who alerted him to a mark on his back.
“She said there was something weird on my back,” he told the Daily Mail in 2010. “I asked her what it looked like, and she said it was a patch of skin which was black, misshapen, with a crusty texture and about the size of a 10p piece.
Lock continued: “I had no idea how long it had been there. It didn’t hurt or itch, so there was nothing that would have drawn my attention to it.
“Being in the small of my back, it was not something you could easily see while looking in a mirror.
Lock’s early TV credits include an appearance on 1993 series Newman and Baddiel, alongside Rob Newman and David Baddiel.
His career as a standup comedian launched later that decade and, in 2000, he was named Best Live Comic at the British Comedy Award.
In 2001, he adapted Émile Zola’s 1887 novel La Terre for the film This Filthy Earth, which he co-wrote alongside director Andrew Kötting.
The following year, he released sitcom 15 Storeys High, which began life as a BBC Radio 4 series in the late 1990s.