13 September 2023

Bread star Jean Boht dies aged 91

13 September 2023

Actress Jean Boht, best known for the role of Nellie Boswell in the hit sitcom Bread, has died at the age of 91.

The star, who had been battling dementia, was also known for her appearances on shows such as Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em, Last Of The Summer Wine, Brighton Belles, Doctors, Grange Hill, Juliet Bravo and Boys From The Blackstuff.

A statement from her family said: “It is with overwhelming sadness that we must announce that Jean Boht passed away yesterday Tuesday 12 September.

“Jean had been battling vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease with the indefatigable spirit for which she was both beloved and renowned.

“She was a resident at Denville Hall, the home for members of the theatrical profession.”

She had a long and varied career on stage and screen but it was her role on Bread, created by Carla Lane, for which she was best known.

Running from 1986 to 1991, the show was watched by more than 20 million people at its peak and Boht won a British Comedy Award for best TV comedy actress.

She was the subject of the biographical television show This Is Your Life in 1989.

Born in Bebingdon in 1932, Boht began her career as a £1-a-week student at the Liverpool Playhouse and went on to join the Bristol Old Vic and Manchester Companies before returning to Liverpool to star alongside Sir Anthony Hopkins, Lynda La Plante and Sir Patrick Stewart.

She also starred at the Royal Court, the National Theatre and at the Chichester Festival, as well as numerous West End theatres.

Her film roles included appearances in The Girl In A Swing, Bad Night For The Blues and Mothers And Daughters.

Her family said they would like to send their “grateful thanks” to everyone at Denville Hall “who have taken such wonderful care of Jean and also to the staff at Hillingdon Hospital who made her so comfortable”.

Boht was married to the award-winning composer Carl Davis, who died last month.

They had two children and three grandchildren.

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