John Benfield dead – Prime Suspect star dies age 68 after battle with rare cancer

John Benfield dead - Prime Suspect star dies age 68 after battle with rare cancer

John Benfield has died after battling a rare cancer.

The Prime Suspect star passed away aged 68 after suffering from Sarcoma.

He died at Oxford’s Sobell House Hospice, according to the Oxford Mail.

John, whose real name was John Taylor, was known for playing DCS Michael Kernan opposite Helen Mirren in Prime Suspect.

His agents Marham, Froggatt and Irwin said John always brought “truth and integrity to his roles and was an imposing, strong and rugged figure, with a soul and belief in his craft”.

Born in Wanstead Essex, John and his family moved to Witney in Oxfordshire in 2015.

Prime Suspect star John Benfield has died after battling a rare cancer

Benfield in Prime Suspect with Helen Mirren in 1995

John is survived by his wife Lilian, son Freddie, and grandson Rex.

He appeared in over 70 films and TV series over his career.

As well as Prime Suspect, John also had small roles in BBC drama adaptations such as The Winter’s Tale and The Day of the Triffids.

John died at Oxford’s Sobell House Hospice after battling Sarcoma

He also worked with big name directors the Wachowskis, Woody Allen, Gillian Armstrong, Jim Sheridan, Ken Loach, David Drury, Chris Menaul and Sam Mendes.

His other credits include starring as Cruncher Block in Speed Racer, Brian Blaine in Cassandra’s Dream, Dunston in Endgame and PO Barker in In the Name of the Father.

Most recently he played Captain Axel in Cold Skin.

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John appeared in over 70 films and TV series over his career

Fans have described him as an “amazing actor” and “a gift to the industry”.

John worked a number of jobs before going into acting, including as a chauffeur and he was in the ambulance service.

He married his wife Lilian Lees (known as Lil) on May 6, 1989 at Hammersmith Registry Office.

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