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Sir David, 80, has “regularly been in touch” with his TV co-star since the passing of Archie Lyndhurst at 19 after a “short illness”. The death of Lyndhurst’s son, a CBBC actor best known for his role on So Awkward, was ruled to be “non-suspicious”. Tributes poured in after he was found in their west London home on September 22 but no further details have been announced. Sir David was reported to have been “doing all he can to support” the star whose “heart is broken”, according to The Sun.
Lyndhurst and Sir David played Rodney and Derek ‘Del Boy’ Trotter for more than 20 years and shared their struggles with dealing with the deaths of their co-stars.
In one touching account, Lyndhurst admitted that he was unable to enjoy any of the 64 episodes of Only Fools And Horses because of the heartbreak.
He told The Mail On Sunday last year: “I can’t watch it now. I don’t want to see friends who are no longer with us on screen.
“We used to go and surprise them on their birthdays. We used to wind them up. We used to tease each other.”
Lyndhurst described their bond as being similar to “a family”, which he felt made the passing of his fellow actors all the more upsetting.
He said: “I remember Lennard Pearce, who played Grandad, bless his heart, saying to me, ‘Have you heard about these new VHS video recorder machines?’
“‘That means we’ll now live forever. Did you ever think of that?’ I said, ‘Christ no, I hadn’t’.”
Lyndhurst admitted that while he and Sir David remained close friends, they mainly saw one another at funerals.
He ruled out the possibility of an Only Fools And Horses reunion due the deaths of many original cast members and show writer John Sullivan.
Lyndhurst said: “That’s how it’s been over the past couple of years, it’s horrible. We can’t do it without them. Wouldn’t dream of it.”
The star admitted that he and Sir David deployed the same tactics to being recognised in public.
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He said: “David had a pork pie hat and sunglasses and I had a baseball cap and sunglasses.
“It obviously worked, because one day in Bristol we walked right past one another in the street!”
In a statement after the death of his son, Lyndhurst said: “Lucy and I are utterly grief stricken and respectfully request privacy.”
In previous interviews, he gushed with love, support and pride for Archie.
He told The Guardian in 2015: “When Archie said he wanted to be an actor, I said, ‘I can’t offer any advice other than please don’t do it’.”
Lyndhurst recalled his son’s reaction: “Daddy, I just want to entertain people.’
“I told Lucy, ‘If I ever hear him say the f-word – ‘famous’ – the deal’s off.’
“He never has. He’s filming his second series for CBBC, So Awkward. I wish I’d been as good as him at his age.”
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