Actress Gwyneth Powell, who appeared in the BBC series Grange Hill, has died at the age of 76, her agent has said.
Powell was best known for playing headmistress Bridget McCluskey between 1981 and 1991 and also appeared on the Channel 4 comedy show Man Down.
Her representative, Matthew Lacey, said in a statement on behalf of the family that the actress died “after complications following a major operation.”
She died in Brighton last Thursday and the statement said: “She passed away peacefully in her bed with her husband (Alan Leith) and niece.
“Gwyneth will be greatly missed by her beloved family and friends, as well as by her many fans on many TV shows.”
BBC Children and Education Director Patricia Hidalgo: “We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Gwyneth Powell.
“Her famous portrayal of Mrs. McCluskey is one that will be fondly remembered by everyone who grew up watching Grange Hill.
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“Our condolences are with his family and friends in this time of grief.”
Powell was born on 5 July 1946 in Manchester and landed his first major television role in the 1971 London weekend television dystopian drama series The Guardians.
Although she achieved regular work and appeared in a series of TV dramas, her career took off after she was cast in Grange Hill, a children’s series about life at a comprehensive school.
She played the tough but fair headmistress Bridget McCluskey for a decade, until she was requested to write out so she could pursue other roles.
Her other credits included Heartbeat, Holby City and Father Brown, and in 2013 she was cast as the mother of Welsh comic Greg Davies’ character in the Channel 4 comedy Man Down.
Powell was married to fellow actor Alan Leith.