Gareth Hunt, the suave Avenger, dies at 65

14th March 2007

Gareth Hunt, the star of The New Avengers, has died of cancer at the age of 65, his agent confirmed today.

Hunt had battled pancreatic cancer for the past two years, but had been determined to carry on as normal.

Gareth Hunt in the New Avengers

His agent Alexandra McLean-Williams said: "Hardly anybody knew he was ill. He continued to work, and up until New Year you would never have realised anything was wrong.

"He would have chemo one day and be on the golf course the next. The way he dealt with it was absolutely remarkable."

She added: "This will have come as a huge shock to Gareth's colleagues and admirers as he fought this dreadful disease privately and bravely. I am honoured and feel very privileged to have been his agent but more the close friendship I had with both him and his wonderful wife Amanda, the one person my heart goes out to."

The actor, who first hit our screens as a minor character in TV dramas in 1972 appeared as Frederick in Upstairs, Downstairs.

He rose to the height of his fame as Mike Gambit in TV favourite the New Avengers, starring opposite Joanna Lumley as Purdey.

Gareth Hunt (right) with New Avengers co-stars Joanna Lumley and Patrick McNee

The New Avengers ran for two seasons in 1976-77. Hunt's character was an expert marksman and athlete.

The TV star continued in the public eye as the face of Nescafe, with a series of adverts featuring his trademark handshake to reveal coffee beans.

Most recently Gareth appeared in episodes of the TV drama doctors.

Born Alan Leonard Hunt on 7 February 1943 in London, he leaves a wife Amanda and three sons.