Dale Winton death: Tributes flood in as Supermarket Sweep presenter dies aged 62
Tributes have poured in for Supermarket Sweep presenter Dale Winton after news of his death hit the internet.
The British TV star who shot to fame in the early 1990s has died age 62, his agent confirmed on Wednesday night.
Winton’s agent, Jan Kennedy, told the BBC that the television star had died at home.
Kennedy said in a statement: “It is with great sadness that we can confirm the passing of Dale Winton who died at home earlier today.
“While we know many will share this terrible loss, we ask that you respect the family’s privacy at this time of grief.”
Stars were quick to pay tribute to the late star of the small screen with Boy George expressing his shock at the news.
Graham Norton said Winton had given him the best showbiz advice of his career, telling him to never quit. He tweeted: “Dale Winton gave me the best bit of showbiz advice I ever got – Don’t quit the hit! Thank you Dale. X”
Dragon’s Den staple Duncan Bannatyne dubbed him ‘the great entertainer.’
Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan was one of the first in a long list of celebs to Tweet his sympathies upon hearing the news.
Blue singer Antony Costa was also among the first to share his condolences.
“No no no my old friend #dalewinton has died I’m absolutely devastated one of the most kindest men you could ever meet…#RIPdalewinton xx,” he wrote.
Fellow Blue singer Duncan James also took to Twitter, as well as former Big Brother presenter Davina McCall.
Stacey Solomon said: “Devastating news. Thoughts and prayers to family and friends. A true entertainer and wonderful person. RIP”
Winton emotionally opened up about never having officially come out as gay to his mother in his 2002 autobiography.
He said she had hinted that she might have known about his sexual orientation.
“She heard me on the phone to my then boyfriend, who was very obviously gay, very camp. She said to me: ‘I never want you to feel there’s something you can’t tell me, and I will never judge or discriminate,’” he wrote.
He added: “That was the point I should have gone: ‘Mum, I’ll tell you: I’m gay.’”
In another interview in 2008, Winton said he never officially came out because nobody ever asked about his sexual orientation.
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“The truth – it’s absolutely the truth – is that no one ever asked me. I did countless interviews over the years and I was always waiting for the question. It never came. It became a game, the ambiguity of it all.
“And I’m not a banner-waving gay guy, because I actually don’t believe it’s important. People never say ‘vehement heterosexual Michael Parkinson,’ but it will say ‘camp gay entertainer Graham Norton’ or ‘Dale Winton’ since I’ve officially come out.”
Winton more recently opened up about battles with depression, triggered by events like breakups and the death of his mother, Sheree Winton.
He told Loose Women: “There are worse things in the world, but I had the health issues and the depression. My mum died.
“I did not want to put one foot in front of the other outside the house. I would not leave the house. Five years I went through it. I wanted to withdraw…If you’ve never had it, you’ll never understand it.”