Jim Bowen was a hugely loved star

Bullseye host Jim Bowen has died aged 80, his wife confirmed the news to BBC Radio Lancashire.

The broadcaster and comedian enjoyed enormous success with Bullseye, which was one of the biggest shows on the box in its heyday.

The Sunday teatime hit ran for 14 years and saw Jim strike up a warm friendship with the contestants, who’d try to win prizes through a combination of dart throwing and answering questions.

Jim, who was joined on the show by darts commentator Tony Green, was especially loved for his catchphrases, including: “Keep out of the black and in to the red, nothing in this game for two in a bed”; “Super, smashing, great” and “You can’t beat a bit of bully.” The prizes on Bullseye often amused fans, with people wondering quite what contestants were going to do if they won a speedboat.

Jim, who was previously a deputy headmaster before going into showbiz, also enjoyed cameo roles in dramas such as Last Of The Summer Wine as well as roles in Jonathan Creek and in Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights.

In 2011, Jim, also known as Alf in the Tetley Bitter adverts, said he had learned to “appreciate all the things in life” after suffering two strokes.