Dad's Army star Ian Lavender dies aged 77 as tributes flood in for Private Frank Pike actor

Ian Lavender

Ian Lavender dies aged 77: The actor played Private Pike

Alex Davies

By Alex Davies

Published: 05/02/2024

- 12:36

Updated: 05/02/2024

- 15:20

The actor was best known for playing Private Pike in the wartime series

Dad's Army legend Ian Lavender has died at the age of 77.

The Dad's Army Radio Show X account shared the news with its followers on Monday morning following his death on Friday.

Its announcement read: "We are deeply saddened to hear the passing of the wonderful, Ian Lavender.

"In what truly marks the end of an era, Ian was the last surviving member of the Dad’s Army main cast.

"His wonderful performance as Private Frank Pike will live on for decades to come.

"He leaves behind a legacy of laughter enjoyed by millions. We will dedicate this year’s tour to his memory.

Ian Lavender as Private Pike

Ian Lavender as Private Pike in Dad's Army


"Our thoughts and love are with Ian’s wonderful wife Miki, their family and close friends."

Tributes from far and wide have since poured in for Lavender, with one fan writing on X: "RIP Ian Lavender. And with his sad passing, we've now lost the entire regular/supporting cast of Dad's Army. Truly the end of an era."

A second echoed: "This is heartbreaking. None of the cast of Dad's Army remain. Ian Lavender was a wonderful man and he will be missed."

While a third added: "I am very sorry to hear that Ian Lavender has died, but Frank Pike will still be making people laugh many years from now. There is a sad irony in knowing that a handful of real Home Guardsmen have outlived the whole of the fictional Walmington on Sea platoon. #DadsArmy."

Dad's Army cast

Ian Lavender was the last surviving member of the main Dad's Army cast


And a fourth concurred: "Sad day, but grateful for all the laughs and smiles they gave us. Rest in peace, Ian Lavender." (sic)

Lavender starred in all 80 episodes of Dad's Army alongside castmates Arthur Lowe, John Le Mesurier, John Laurie, Clive Dunn and Arnold Ridley.

Dunn died in 2012 which left Lavender as the last remaining Dad's Army stalwart after Lowe, Le Mesurier, Laurie and Ridley all died in the early '80s.

Lavender's stint as Private Pike defined the actor's career, with him admitting previously the role led to him being typecast throughout his life.

However, Lavender had no regrets about being synonymous with the character, telling the Guardian in 2014: "If you asked me, 'Would you like to be in a sitcom that was watched by 18 million people, was on screen for 10 years, and will create lots of work for you and provide not just for you but for your children for the next 40-odd years'… I'd be a fool to have regrets."

His CV also boasted a long-running stint on BBC soap EastEnders as Derek Harkinson, in which he bagged over 240 credits.

Elsewhere in recent years, Lavender enjoyed bit-part roles in the likes of Doctors, Holby City and Casualty.

You may like