Veteran stage and screen actor Richard Briers passed away at his London home on Sunday. He was 79. Briers is best known to UK audiences for his work in such BBC series as The Good Life, Ever Decreasing Circles and Monarch Of The Glen. His TV breakout was the 1960s sitcom Marriage Lines in which he starred opposite Prunella Scales, but it was The Good Life (1975-1978) that made him a household name as the obstinate Tom Good. Briers began acting in the theater in the late 1950s and went on to become a member of Kenneth Branagh’s Renaissance Theatre Company, taking on parts in classic Shakespeare works. He also had roles in several of Branagh’s movies including Peter’s Friends, Much Ado About Nothing, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Henry V and Hamlet. Branagh said today, “He was a national treasure, a great actor and a wonderful man. He was greatly loved and he will be deeply missed.” Briers had suffered from emphysema for several years. He is survived by his wife Anne and their two daugthers.
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