Sir Antony Jay dead: Writer of Yes Minister and Yes, Prime Minister dies aged 86

The writer and producer died 'peacefully' on Sunday evening surrounded by his wife and family 

Alexandra Sims
Tuesday 23 August 2016 18:49
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Sir Antony Jay at Buckingham Palace after his investiture as a Knight Bachelor
Sir Antony Jay at Buckingham Palace after his investiture as a Knight Bachelor

Sir Antony Jay, the broadcaster and writer who contributed to comedy hits such as Yes Minister and Yes, Prime Minister, has died at the age of 86.

The writer and producer died “peacefully” on Sunday evening surrounded by his wife and family.

Along with co-author Jonathon Lynn he is best known for writing the BBC political comedies starring Paul Eddington, Sir Nigel Hawthorne and Derek Fowlds.

He began his career in the BBC’s current affairs department and was a founding member of the Tonight team, later becoming editor of the programme in 1982.

Sir Antony was appointed Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) for personal services to the Royal Family after scripting the documentaries Royal Family and Elizabeth R: A Year In The Life Of A Queen.

In 1988 he was created a Knight Bachelor.

Sir Antony also authored several management books and founded Video Arts, a management and sales training film company, alongside John Cleese and two other colleagues in 1972.

In his later years, Sir Antony became an outspoken critic of the BBC, recommending that the public broadcaster be slimmed down in a report commissioned by the centre-right think tank the Centre for Political Studies in 2008.

Earlier this month he had reunited with Lynn to create a new Yes Minister sketch inspired by Brexit for the Guardian.

Additional reporting by Press Association

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