Kinsale actor, Tony Scannell, aka The Bill's Det Sgt Ted Roach, dies

The death has taken place of Kinsale actor, Tony Scannell — best known for his role as Detective Sergeant Ted Roach in ITV show The Bill . He spent nine years with the long-running police drama, from 1984 to 1993, and briefly reprised his role in 2000.
Kinsale actor, Tony Scannell, aka The Bill's Det Sgt Ted Roach, dies
Tony Scannell has passed away aged 74. Image Credit: UKTV Play
Tony Scannell has passed away aged 74. Image Credit: UKTV Play

The death has taken place of Kinsale actor, Tony Scannell — best known for his role as Detective Sergeant Ted Roach in ITV show The Bill. He spent nine years with the long-running police drama, from 1984 to 1993, and briefly reprised his role in 2000.

Scannell was involved in a number of other TV series and films during his career, among them the 1980 version of Flash, where he appeared alongside Max von Sydow as 'Ming's Officer'.

Born in Cork in 1945, Scannell spent many years in Kinsale, staying on in the town to finish his schooling and to live with his grandmother when his father Tom and mother Peggy moved to England for work.

His father, Tom Scannell, hailed from Youghal, and had a career as a professional footballer in the 1950s, mostly with Southend United, and had one cap for the Republic of Ireland.

Before he became an actor, Tony Scannell had a stint in the Royal Air Force where he trained as a photographic reconnaisance and had spent three years in Cyprus.

In 1989, Scannell appeared on Wogan — the chatshow presented by Terry Wogan — and spoke about the research he had done for his role in The Bill:

"About five years ago the cast did the research to see a police station at work and I went and met a number of detectives socially and got to know about characters like Roach, and when I met police people on the beat, they say 'there's a Ted Roach in every station'."

Resident in Britain for many years, Scannell, who was 74 when he died, is survived by his wife Agnes Lillis, three adult children, two brothers and two sisters.

Ms Lillis told BBC News: "Tony was the big love of my life. We'd been together a long, long time, and we grew closer and closer. Our relationship had many different lives, and he had many different lives in the sense of character transformations. He was very mellow and considerate."

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