Ben Roberts dead: Actor who played Derek Conway in The Bill dies at 70

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Ben Roberts, who was best known for his role in The Bill, has died aged 70.

The actor, who starred in the hit ITV police drama from 1987 to 2000, passed away on Monday, his agent confirmed.

Ben, who was originally from Bangor, in Wales, also appeared in other well-known TV dramas including Doctors and Casualty.

In a statement released by his agents LCM Limited, posted on Twitter, they said: "Remembering the wonderful Ben Roberts who sadly passed away on Monday.

"Best known as Chief Inspector Derek Conway in The Bill & he had an extensive career in theatre, TV & film.

Ben Roberts, who was best known for his role in The Bill, has died aged 70

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"Our thoughts are with his wife Helen and family at this time."

The TV star was born Bennett Roberts in July 1950.

His first TV role was starring in the series A Woman's Place, alongside Ralph Bates.

He later appeared in crime-action drama The Professionals and played an extra in Doctor Who in 1984.

Ben's biggest role came in 1987 when he landed the part of Chief Inspector Derek Conway in The Bill.

His agents confirmed his passing on Twitter

Ben would play the role for 13 years until he left the show in 2000.

He continued to act and appeared in two different roles in Doctors, once in 2010 and then in 2012.

His other TV roles included The Queen's Nose, Tales of Sherwood Forest and Sooty Heights.

Ben's last major television role came in 2016, when he played Isaac Sandison in Casualty.

His film roles included starring in 2011 romantic-drama Jane Eyre as Briggs, alongside Michael Fassbender and Mia Wasikowska.

Ben's biggest role came in 1987 when he landed the part of Chief Inspector Derek Conway in The Bill
(Image: Thames Television)

He also starred in Another Year, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and A Little Chaos.

In 2019 he had a part in the Danish biographical film Daniel, which was his last listed acting job.

Tributes have poured in for the late actor on Twitter since the sad news of his passing was announced.

His former co-star Ben Peyton called him a "superb actor and an absolutely hilarious man".

Ben with Jane Wall as PC Worrell and Colin Tarrant as Inspector Monroe in The Bill

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Ben added: "We were both axed from The Bill on the same day back in 2001.

"He came to my dressing room and said: 'They made a mistake with our names. You were supposed to be sacked twice!'"

He finished the tribute post with the hashtag #legend.

Ben lived in Derbyshire with his wife Helen Lloyd, an award winning audiobook narrator.

He is survived by Helen, his son, Joe, and one granddaughter, Elsie.

Rest in peace.

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