Celebrity chef Keith Floyd dies aged 65

Tue Sep 15, 2009 7:25am EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - Keith Floyd, one of the first and most flamboyant of Britain's celebrity TV chefs, has died aged 65 after a heart attack.

He died at his partner's Dorset home Monday, the BBC reported, citing the ghost-writer of his autobiography James Steen.

Floyd was diagnosed with bowel cancer in the Summer.

He shot to fame in the 1980s with his unconventional cookery shows and passion for food that endeared him to millions of viewers around the world.

With his trademark bow-tie, gravelly voice and often shambolic style he cooked on camera from bizarre locations with a ubiquitous glass of wine in hand.

Tributes flowed from Britain's most well-known chefs many of whom credit him with having transformed the face of television cookery and paved the way for their own fame.

Marco Pierre White said Floyd "had inspired a nation to want to cook" and contemporary chefs like himself.

"He had an ability to speak to the common man without patronizing them. He spoke in a way which they understood -- he inspired them," he told Sky News.

"He had great confidence at the stove, which very few people have in an occupational kitchen today."   Continued...