It is with a heavy heart that I pass along the sad news of the death of Peter Sallis. The beloved actor will be best known to UNC-TV viewers as Cleggy on Last of The Summer Wine and to the world at large as the voice of the cheese-loving Yorkshireman Wallace in the Academy Award-winning Wallace and Gromit series.
A quick glance at the late actor’s imdb page shows a long career with credits going back to the late 1940s. He performed in film, on TV and on stage and appeared opposite theatre legends like Gielgud and Olivier. Fame, as it was, came to him late it life when he took a role as mild-mannered former lino salesman Norman Clegg on what would become Britain’s longest-running sitcom (on which he starred from 1973 to 2010). Even later in life, he gave voice to the speaking half of Nick Park’s stop motion duo and found a sort of newfound celebrity.
Of his Wallace and Gromit work, Sallis has said, “It is pleasing knowing millions are going to see your work and enjoy it. To still be involved in a project like this at my age is heartwarming. To have a legacy like this is very comforting. I am very lucky to have been involved.”
According to his agents, Peter Sallis died peacefully, with his family by his side, last Friday. He was 96.