Goodbye Pike! Dad's Army legend Ian Lavender laid to rest after his death aged 77

Dad's Army legend Ian Lavender has been laid to rest after his death aged 77 credit:Bang Showbiz
Dad's Army legend Ian Lavender has been laid to rest after his death aged 77 credit:Bang Showbiz

'Dad's Army' star Ian Lavender has been laid to rest.

The legendary TV actor, who was best known for his role as Private Pike in the classic sitcom, passed away last month aged 77, and he was the last surviving cast member of the series.

Several stars, including 'Benidorm' actor Tim Healy, and musicians Rick Wakeman and Alfie Boe, turned out at his funeral at St Mary's Church in Woolpit, Suffolk on Thursday (29.02.24) to pay their respects.

Ian's film director son Sam Lavender paid tribute to his late father during the service, and Rick and Alfie performed a rendition of 'Bring Him Home'.

The actor’s coffin featured a claret and blue scarf - the colours of his favourite football team, Premier League giants Aston Villa - as well as a beret worn by his 'Dad's Army' character Pike.

The 'Dad's Army' theme tune was also played on the church organ.

Last month, a post on the Dad's Army Radio Show's X account announced Ian's passing.

A statement posted to the social media site read: "We are deeply saddened to hear the passing of the wonderful, Ian Lavender. In what truly marks the end of an era, Ian was the last surviving member of the Dad’s Army main cast. His wonderful performance as Private Frank Pike will live on for decades to come."

Ian was just 22 years old when he was given the role of Pike, and starred in all 80 episodes of the iconic British comedy.

It followed a group of elderly Home Guard local defence volunteers at the outbreak of World War II, and also starred Arthur Lowe, Clive Dunn, and John Le Mesurier.

The statement added: "He leaves behind a legacy of laughter enjoyed by millions. We will dedicate this year’s tour to his memory.

"Our thoughts and love are with Ian’s wonderful wife Miki, their family and close friends."

The sitcom concluded in 1977 and Ian went on to star as Bertrand Hepplewhite in 'Parsley Sidings', and made guest appearances in 'Yes Minister', 'Keeping Up Appearances', and 'Goodnight Sweetheart' throughout the 1980s and 1990s.

From 2001 to 2017, he played Derek Harkinson on and off in BBC soap opera 'EastEnders' for more than 200 episodes.