15:50 01 August 2014
Benidorm actor Kenny Ireland, who played the character of ageing swinger Donald Stewart in the ITV comedy series, passed away on Thursday morning. His agent confirmed that he was suffering from cancer for some time and that he underwent treatment last month, which was the reason why his character was written out of Benidorm.
Edinburgh’s Royal Lyceum Theatre had led the tributes to the actor as soon as the news about his passing broke out.
In a statement, the theatre said: "Kenny was Artistic Director of the Royal Lyceum Theatre Company for over 10 years, from 1992-2003, although his connection with the company goes further back than that.z’
"An outspoken supporter of cutwilture in Scotland, and in particular the value of theatre in public life, Kenny Ireland was a strong proponent of a National Theatre for Scotland and a genuine, passionate champion of the arts.
"He is an important part of the Lyceum’s story and of the story of theatre in Scotland and he will be greatly missed.”
Meanwhile, Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond took to Twitter and wrote: “Sad to hear Kenny Ireland - a great actor and former director @lyceumtheatre - has passed away. Deepest condolences to his family and friends.”