It's a cliché to say that a comedian was a genius and will be sorely missed, but there are few who deserve it more than Linda Smith.
Linda Smith joined professional theatre straight from Sheffield University. In 1987, she won the New London Comedy Award and began to develop a reputation in radio.
From her first appearances on The News Quiz and Just A Minute, it was apparent that hers was a major talent.
Smith's outward gentleness was a cover for waspish wit, and she was voted 'Wittiest Living Person' in a Radio 4 poll in 2002.
Smith's one-liners included calling David Blunkett 'Satan's bearded folk singer' and David Mellor the 'thinking woman's fat, ugly bastard'.
Linda Smith's A Brief History of Timewasting, saw her make fun of the ordinary absurdities of life whilst wandering around East London. Two series of the show were made before her tragic and untimely death at the ridiculously young age of 48, in 2006, from ovarian cancer.
Linda Smith made the art of being witty and extremely, show-stoppingly funny look simple, and did it with such gentle charm as to make each and every person listening feel as if she was a close, but very funny, friend.
The shock the comedy world felt at her passing was mirrored in her huge following on radio and television, to whom she will always be the Wittiest Living Person.
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