Doctor Who actor Louis Mahoney dies, aged 81

Sam Warner
Photo credit: Evening Standard - Getty Images

From Digital Spy

Louis Mahoney, an actor who appeared in the likes of Doctor Who, Cry Freedom and Holby City, has died aged 81.

Mahoney was also a lifelong anti-racism campaigner and proved a trailblazer as one of the first Black actors in the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Confirming the sad news of his passing, the actor's agents said: "It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our wonderful client, Louis Mahoney.

"Louis paved the way for many actors who followed: a lifelong activist and champion of antiracism. His warmth and good humour will be sorely missed. A celebration of his life will follow."

Mahoney was born in The Gambia and originally moved to the UK in the late '50s to study medicine, before deciding to pursue a career in acting.

He appeared in the original Doctor Who series as well as the modern revival, playing the role of the elderly Billy in the acclaimed 2007 episode 'Blink'.

Photo credit: BBC

He also starred in Fawlty Towers in 1975, while big screen credits included Cry Freedom and Captain Phillips.

Mahoney was also notable for his work as an activist, helping to found Performers Against Racism to campaign against apartheid in South Africa. He worked with the Equity union to improve the representation of non-white actors on UK TV.

He was also chairman of Equity's Afro-Asian Committee and tried to persuade broadcasters and drama schools to reform their attitudes on creating hurdles for non-white actors to jump through.

Since the sad news was announced, tributes have flooded in:

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