I’ve never been one to go on eulogising about actors, or indeed other stars, as and when they die. But I was made a bit dismal by the news that Dennis Waterman had died. He had a reputation of being a bit of a one-trick pony, but he was more than that.

He was born in the late 40s, got a short gig with the RSC, played ‘Just William’ television series (he was great in that as the cheeky scruff with his heart in the right place.) He had a pretty prominent role in ‘Colditz’ too.

The seventies, he really came on song, as George Carter in ‘The Sweeney,’ later as Terry McCann in ‘Minder.’ Both were similar roles, with Waterman kicking down doors, hitting people, getting hit a lot. He was blessed with two joint leads that were made in heaven, John Thaw in ‘The Sweeney’ and George Cole in ‘Minder.’ Both Thaw and Cole really fired him up, and the relationships between them were  both touching and very very funny. He then cropped up in ‘New Tricks’ about a bunch of hardbitten coppers being dragged out of retirement to sort out some dead cases.

May not sound like much, really, but I’d watched Dennis Waterman for most of my televisual life.

Just a footnote. A little while ago, he was asked what he’d been doing. ‘Spending time at my house in Spain doing fuck all. I like the thinking there.