John Inman, star of the 1970s TV sitcom Are You Being Served?, died today in a London hospital at the age of 71.
The actor, died in St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London, at 4am (1500 AEDT) after being ill for some time, his manager Phil Dale said.
"John, through his character Mr Humphries of Are You Being Served? was known and loved throughout the world," Dale said.
"He was one of the best and finest pantomime dames working to capacity audiences throughout Britain.
"John was known for his comedy plays and farces which were enjoyed from London's West End throughout the country and as far as Australia, Canada and the USA."
Inman's longtime partner, Ron Lynch, is said to be "devastated" at his death.
The actor had been with Lynch for 35 years. The couple "married'' in a civil partnership ceremony at London's Westminster Register office on December 23, 2005.
Inman played camp salesman Mr Humphries - with his famous catch phrase of "I'm free!'' - in the comedy series Are You Being Served? for a decade from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s.
He starred alongside Wendy Richard, who went on to play Pauline Fowler in EastEnders, as well as Molly Sugden, Frank Thornton and Trevor Bannister.
Inman suffered from hepatitis A and had been taken into hospital for tests after problems with his liver.
It was revealed that he had the disease after it forced him to cancel the opening of a pantomime in London in December 2004.
Hepatitis A is an inflammation of the liver caused through eating contaminated food, which the star believed was how he came to have the virus.
It was initially hoped he would be able to return to the pantomime, in which he was due to play Wanda the Cook in Dick Whittington, before Christmas 2004, but he never worked again.
The virus is highly infectious and symptoms include fever, loss of energy and jaundice.