Play School and Play Away presenter Brian Cant dies at 83
Brian Cant at the EE British Academy Children’s Awards 2010 (Picture: Rex)

Former BBC children’s presenter Brian Cant has died at the age of 83.

Known to many for his work on Play School and Play Away, as well as Jackanory and Dappledown Farm, Cant had been living with Parkinson’s disease since 1999.

A statement from the family said: ‘He lived courageously with Parkinson’s disease for a long time.’

He passed away at Denville Hall, a retirement home often used by those in the entertainment industry.

Play School and Play Away presenter Brian Cant dies at 83
Brian Cant on Play School (Picture: BBC)

Born 12 July 1933, he joined BBC Two programme Play School from it’s first episode, and was hired after he was asked during his audition to sit in a cardboard box and pretend to ‘row out to sea’.

He stayed with the programme for 21 of its 24-year run and became known to British children across the country as ‘Mr Play School’.

From 1990-2003, Cant starred as Brian the farmer in the children’s television puppet programme Dappledown Farm, and in 2010 he received the special award at the Children’s BAFTAs for his work in children’s television.

He leaves behind his wife Cherry Britton, and their three children, daughter Rose, and twins Christabel and Peter. He has two sons from his first marriage, Nicholas and Richard.

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