Beloved children's Rainbow TV star Freddy Marks tragically dies aged 71

The star is best known for hosting children’s TV show Rainbow (Photo: YouTube / Thames Television)

TV presenter and musician Freddy Marks has sadly died at the age of 71.

The star, who is best known for hosting children’s TV show Rainbow, passed away on Thursday (27 May), although the cause of his death is not yet known.

‘A talented and funny guy’

The tragic news was announced on a Rainbow fan group page on Facebook.

The post read: “It is with a heavy heart that we are sad to say that "Freddy Marks" from Rod, Jane and Freddy has sadly passed away yesterday.

“Freddy was a very talented and funny guy who always brought a smile to everybody's face.

"Our thoughts go out to his wife Jane Tucker, Rod Burton and all their friends and family at this difficult time. Freddy will be greatly missed."

Freddy was one of Rainbow’s musical trio, alongside Jane Tucker and Rod Burton, which aired on TV screens from the 1970s to the 1990s.

The cast appeared alongside Bungle and Zippy and played catchy musical tunes for children.

The trio also shared success on their show Rod, Jane and Freddy, which ran on TV for ten years in the 1980s.

Tributes have been pouring in for the star following the news of his death. Twitter users wrote:

“So sad to hear of the death of Freddy Marks, of Rod, Jane and Freddy fame. Lovely chap. Xx”

“Very sad to learn of Freddy Marks' passing. My thoughts are with Jane and their families.”

“Oh this is so sad! Freddy along with Rod and Jane had such an influence on my childhood... RIP #FreddyMarks”

“Sorry to hear of the passing of Freddy Marks. For anyone growing up in the 70s, 80s and 90s Rainbow and Rod, Jane and Freddy were such a massive part of our lives. Halcyon days of fun.”

“Very sad news indeed, R.I.P. Freddy Marks :(“

Married co-stars

Freddy married his co-star Jane five years ago at London’s luxurious Claridge’s hotel.

The couple’s romance hit headlines after it was revealed that Jane had previously been married to bandmate Rod Burton.

The pair were hit with rumours of an illicit love triangle after they got together in 1985 following her split with Rod, but didn’t fully reveal their romance until 2013.

Freddy and Jane finally tied the knot in 2016 after 30 years together.

A successful career

Freddy was born in Cheshire in 1949 and developed a passion for music and theatre from a young age, and toured with various bands.

The star trained at The Central School of Speech and Drama in London from 168, and began his career in theatre after graduating in 1971 with roles in The Rocky Horror Show in London’s West End.

He went on to become a household name in 1979 after landing a role on Rainbow, when he replaced Roger Walker.

Freddy continued to perform after Rainbow was taken off the air, touring across the UK in pantomimes.