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Kay Mellor dead: Fat Friends actress Ruth Jones pays tribute to writer

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Mellor has been hailed as ‘big-hearted’ by Jones, who worked with her on Fat Friends (Picture: Getty Images)

Fat Friends actress Ruth Jones has remembered the programme’s writer Kay Mellor as ‘one of television’s greats’ following her death. 

Mellor, also best known for her work on Band of Gold and Girlfriends, died on Sunday night at the age of 71. 

She famously wrote the ITV sitcom Fat Friends, which aired between 2000 and 2005. 

Following the devastating news of her death, Jones – who played Kelly Chadwick in the popular series – has paid tribute to the iconic screenwriter. 

She said in a statement: ‘I am completely shocked to hear the news of Kay’s untimely death. Her contribution to British television was outstanding and I feel privileged to have worked with her.

‘Such a down-to-earth, funny, big-hearted person whose brilliance lay in seeing the extraordinary in the day-to-day.

Ruth Jones and James Corden starred in both Fat Friends and Gavin & Stacey together (Picture: BBC Pictures)

‘She was a great mentor to me when I first started writing – and always hugely encouraging of new writers – a real testament to the idea of paying it forward.’ 

Jones, 55, continued: ‘Her series Fat Friends was a massive turning point in my career and I will be eternally grateful to her for what she did for me.

British television has lost one of its greats. Thank you Kay for all that you gave us. I cannot believe you’ve gone.

‘My thoughts are with Anthony, Yvonne and Gaynor and all the family at this unconscionably sad time.’ 

Mellor died on Sunday night (Picture: Rex Features)

Emmerdale actress Lisa Riley, who also starred in Fat Friends as Rebecca Patterson, also paid tribute to the beloved writer and wrote in a social media post: ‘DEAREST KAY… REST IN PEACE……..what a massive shock to hear this news, you have been taken far far far to young. 

‘You were the best boss to work for, you embraced all that is good about our industry, believing in talent. #rip #kaymellor [sic].’ 

Fat Friends also starred James Corden and was later turned into a musical.

Mellor’s death was announced on Tuesday by a spokesperson for her TV production company, Rollem Productions, who said: ‘It is with profound sadness that we announce the untimely and sudden passing of our beloved friend, mentor and colleague Kay Mellor on Sunday May 15 2022.

‘We have lost a phenomenal talent and a true luminary. We ask that you please respect the privacy of the family and friends at this time.’

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MORE : Kay Mellor praised for ‘believing in talent’ as Fat Friends star Lisa Riley and Russell T Davies lead tributes after screenwriter’s death aged 71


MORE : Kay Mellor’s best TV shows from Fat Friends to The Syndicate as acclaimed writer dies aged 71





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