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Photos of Richard Whiteley
The Book of Condolence
Richard Whiteley was a student at GiggleswickSchool, West Yorkshire and went on to CambridgeUniversity. He was the first face to been seen on the new Channel 4 when it first broadcast in 1982. He opened the show with the line “As the countdown on a new channel ends, a brand-new Countdown begins.”
He famously said that when he died he would be remembered as the man “off the telly who was bitten by a ferret!”
He was known as “Twice Nightly Whiteley” as he presented both Channel 4's Countdown and Yorkshire Television’s evening news programme Calendar.
Carol Vordeman, a friend and co-host on Countdown said on Calendar: “I have lost a great friend and a fantastic man.”
Richard was taken into hospital in May and was diagnosed as having pneumonia. He was transferred from the Bradford Royal Infirmary to the Leeds General Infirmary last week and had major heart surgery. He died on Sunday 26th June.
He has left behind his long-term partner, Kathryn and a son.
There is to be a private funeral for Richard Whiteley next Wednesday 6th July; however, there will be a Memorial Service in the Autumn. Date and venue will be announced in due course.
From the Headmaster:
“The whole community of Giggleswick School is deeply shocked by the death of Richard Whiteley. As is well documented, Richard had a life-long interest in Giggleswick School, where he was a pupil from 1957-62, before going up to Cambridge to read English.
“He was an enthusiastic OG (Old Giggleswickian), and actively served as a Governor from 1980 to the present day. He was a generous supporter of the School by word and deed, taking a particular interest in the Chapel services, musical events and drama productions, even going on tour to Australia with the School productions of the Boyfriend and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
He was known personally by pupils and staff, teaching and non-teaching alike, and his unique contribution could not have been more valued. We extend our deepest sympathy to his partner, Kathryn, and all his family and friends. His remarkable service to Giggleswick School will be marked in a suitable way in the future”.