Comedian and Frank Skinner’s former co-host Gareth Richards dies after car crash

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Comedian Gareth Richards, a former colleague of Frank Skinner, has died after being involved in a car accident last month.

Skinner, 66, struggled to hold back the tears during his radio show last week where he explained that his friend had been in a “very big road accident”.

Richards’ death was confirmed by his wife, Laura, in a post on Facebook on Saturday, where she wrote: “It is with great sadness that I have to share that Gareth Richards passed away on Friday 7th April (Good Friday) at 6.30pm.

“He was in a terrible car accident on Monday 27th March at 11.30pm and sustained serious brain injuries. It was a miracle that he arrived at the hospital alive.

“However, the latest scan revealed that the extent of the damage was so severe that they would have to remove all of the supportive medications and allow him to be at peace.

“The boys are bearing up well. There will be details of the funeral and other ways to remember Gareth to follow, as I know that he was well-loved. At the moment the grief is a lot to cope with. Thank you all for your support and kindness.”

Richards had co-hosted with Skinner and Emily Dean when The Frank Skinner Show first went on air.

Hamlet press night – London
Gareth Richards worked with Frank Skinner and supported him on two comedy tours (Ian West/PA)

While telling his Absolute Radio show listeners about the collision and Richards’ condition on April 1, Skinner admitted “it’s not looking great” and described Richards as “a fantastic bloke”.

Richards, 41, began his comedy career in 2004.

He was a finalist in the Hackney Empire New Act of the Year 2007 competition, and was also runner-up in the Amused Moose Laugh-Off in 2007.

As his success grew, Richards took his first solo stand up act – Stand Up Between Songs – to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2010, after which he was nominated for the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Newcomer prize.

Richards took a show to the famous arts festival almost every year following and was due to perform his tenth solo show at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2023.

Tributes from the comedy world poured in on social media, with author and comedian Adam Kay writing: “Indescribably sad about Gareth Richards. It is an almost unique eulogy for a comedian that every single person they met says what a kind, sweet person they were. Rest in peace my friend.”

Comedian Jason Manford posted on Twitter: “Myself and the whole team at @ManfordsComedy are devastated to hear the news that Gareth Richards passed away today.

“He was a wonderfully inventive & funny comedian but more importantly a kind & thoughtful man. Our thoughts are with his wife & children at this time.”

Stand up comic and regular Mock The Week panellist Angela Barnes wrote: “The news we’ve all been dreading has come that @garethrichards has left us.

“He was so funny and, above all, so kind and gentle. Love and strength to his family and friends and his comedy family who are all reeling from this. Rest in peace Gareth xxx”

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