Tributes have been pouring in from across the entertainment world and on social media this morning after it was announced that Paul O’Grady has sadly died at aged 67.
The influential TV personality’s passing was announced in the early hours of the morning.
His partner, André Portasio, announced that the Merseyside-born star had passed away “unexpectedly but peacefully” in a public statement.
The statement reads: “It is with great sadness that I inform you that Paul has passed away unexpectedly but peacefully yesterday evening. We ask, at this difficult time, that whilst you celebrate his life you also respect our privacy as we come to terms with this loss.
“He will be greatly missed by his loved ones, friends, family, animals and all those who enjoyed his humour, wit and compassion.
“I know that he would want me to thank you for all the love you have shown him over the years.”
With an illustrious entertainment career spanning over four decades, O’Grady was known and loved by British audiences as a comedian, broadcaster, actor, writer, and former drag queen – who first achieved notability in the London gay scene during the 1980s with his drag queen persona, Lily Savage, before going on to gain further popularity throughout the 1990s.
He used his public platform and popularity as Savage at this time to speak openly on LGBTQ+ issues and become a prominent advocate of gay rights.
Starring as Lily Savage, he presented the television shows The Big Breakfast (1995–1996), Blankety Blank (1997–2002), and Lily Live! (2000–2001) – which earned him various awards and saw him become a beloved public figure.
Paul O’Grady as his iconic drag persona, Lily Savage / Credit: ITV
O’Grady chose to retire the Lily Savage persona, and go on to make a name for himself as a presenter of various television and radio shows in the 2000s.
He was perhaps most well-known for hosting the self-titled talk show, The Paul O’Grady Show.
He also presented a rebooted version of Blind Date, several ITV documentaries, featured on TV shows such as Dr Who, Holby City, and Eyes Down, and cemented his place as one of the nation’s most-famous dog lovers and animal rights advocates with his long-time support of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, and for presenting shows such as Paul O’Grady: For The Love of Dogs and Paul O’Grady’s Animal Orphans.
O’Grady was honoured with an MBE for services to entertainment in 2008.
O’Grady was also a lover of dogs longtime advocate for animal rights / Credit: ITV | Battersea Dogs & Cats Home
Since the news of O’Grady’s passing was announced, touching tributes have been pouring in in their hundreds from right across the world of entertainment and on social media – both from those who knew and had worked with him in the past, and from those who admired his work and all that he achieved and had stood for throughout his respected career.
Such sad news. Paul O’Grady – funny, fearless, brave, kind and wise. Will be sorely missed. A really special man.
I’m in a state of shock this morning, waking up to the news that my gorgeous colleague and friend, Paul O’Grady has passed away. I’m actually reeling in disbelief. He was such a wonderful human being, funny and to the point. Paul, legend, RIP darling.
Paul O'Grady was fucking amazing. We all grew up watching Lily Savage (I can remember watching her on The Big Breakfast and my mum proper laughing) but it's only in more recent years I realised what an incredible life Paul had had. What a loss! pic.twitter.com/aFgXbceXpY
Paul O’Grady was in the trenches fighting for our community during the HIV & AIDS epidemic, she took drag mainstream, she made our mums howl with laughter and normalised gay people on TV by being utterly vile. I can’t imagine a world without her. A truly brave and hilarious man x pic.twitter.com/Zf5ABmg9J7
What a fucking life led. Truly. Back when the Met stormed into the RVT for it being a gay bar, all wearing rubber gloves to “protect” themselves during the HIV crisis, Paul O’Grady was on stage as Lily and immediately quipped “Looks like we have help with the washing up!” Iconic.
Before Drag Race and social media it was rare for queens to break through into mainstream media, Paul was one of the few leading the way and smashing down barriers. Everyone loved him, but he preferred animals. RIP Paul O’Grady AKA the legendary Lily Savage, you will be missed 💔 pic.twitter.com/CXwe1LsKoc
A look at the plans to turn historic Ancoats mill with rich musical heritage into new apartment complex
Hodder + Partners have just revealed new CGIs and a more detailed look at the plans for their redevelopment of the longstanding Brunswick Mill in Ancoats which is set to become a brand-new apartment complex.
The proposals to turn the once creative space with decades of musical heritage into a new residential site were revealed back in 2021 and approved within just a few months, despite having been met with plenty of resistance given its history and cultural significance.
Nevertheless, Northern company Big Red Construction recently kicked off the £50+ million renovation on behalf of developer Arrowsmith Investments and the apartments are projected to be finished in 2026.
With that in mind, the architectural designers Hodder have just released a new look at what Brunswick Mill is set to look like once completed:
The short trailer gives a glimpse at the history of the Brunswick Mill space and what it’s set to become.
Set to transform the historic industrial mill-turned-creative space and music studios on the edge of New Islington into 153 new apartments, ranging from one, two and three-bedroom residences, the redevelopment will be spread across two phases.
In line with designs by Hodder + Partners, the initial phase involves converting the existing mill building and the construction of new four and seven-storey elements to accommodate the remaining 127 homes on the Bradford Road plot in Ancoats.
Big Red Construction, who are also working on the Peelers Yard building for CERT Property and Myprotein founder Oliver Cookson, are expected to complete phase one by the first quarter of 2026.
Here’s another look at what living space people are already buying up:
The bathroom plans.‘New with the old’ bedroom-designs.A first look inside the Brunswick Mill flats. (Credit: Supplied)
Along with Hodder + Partners as architects, the project team also consists of HW Consultancy who are covering structural aspects, Manchester firm Clancy for mechanical and electrical considerations, as well as AM Pyro as fire engineers.
With property company Orlando Reid serving as estate agents for the project, 42 out of the 153 apartments have already been sold off-plan, with managing director Baljit Arora describing it as “an exciting period for all parties involved and for the city of Manchester”.
This is just the latest chapter in the continued regeneration of the Ancoats and the New Islington areas, which remain two of the most heavily re-developed areas in the city centre and Greater Manchester as a whole. You can see other hot properties in and around the region HERE.