Butterflies actor Bruce Montague dies aged 83

He was described as a ‘gentleman' by his talent agency

Bruce Montague, best known for playing Leonard Dunn in the BBC sitcom Butterflies, has died at the age of 83.

The actor, originally from Kent, also appeared in the soaps Hollyoaks and Doctors and on stage in productions of 42nd Street and Funny Girl.

His death on Tuesday was announced by his talent agency Belfield and Ward, which shared a tribute on Twitter.

It said: “We are very sad to report that the glorious Bruce Montague has passed away. Such a gentleman and he will be sorely missed.

“What a talent and what a career on stage and screen! From Butterflies to more recently Funny Girl & 42nd St. Rest well darling man!”

Montague starred in Butterflies opposite Wendy Craig, who played Ria Parkinson, a frustrated housewife, and Geoffrey Palmer as her hard-working but reserved dentist husband, Ben.

The series, which was written by Carla Lane and broadcast on BBC Two from 1978 to 1983, followed Ria as she contemplates an affair with Montague’s Leonard.

Investitures at Buckingham Palace
Wendy Craig with her CBE for services to drama and charity (Victoria Jones/PA)

In 1999, Montague played Mr Brownlow in Oliver! directed by Sir Sam Mendes at the London Palladium.

2000 saw him guest star in the Doctor Who audio story The Genocide Machine, and the following year he lent his voice to the Sword Of Orion, also featuring Paul McGann as The Doctor.

He also played automobile tycoon Abner Dillon in a UK tour of classic stage musical 42nd Street, later reprising the role in the West End from 2017.