Entertainment & Arts

Terry Nutkins was 'a natural communicator'

Image caption Terry Nutkins and Marshall Corwin near his home Glenelg on the west coast of Scotland, near the Isle of Skye, in 2011.

Emmy-winning TV producer Marshall Corwin was a close friend of Terry Nutkins. They worked together at the BBC, and co-wrote a book on pet ownership, simply called Pets.

He shares his personal memories of the wildlife enthusiast and broadcaster below.

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Media captionFriend Marshall Corwin: He was a "warm, larger-than-life character"

"I spent my last weekend with Terry (and fellow presenter Chris Rogers) in unusually beautiful weather at his remote cottage on the north west coast of Scotland.

"He had just been diagnosed with leukaemia and it seemed appropriate to be surrounded by everything he loved, friends, animals, food, beer and the most spectacular view across the Sound of Sleat to Skye.

"As a child he had had the most unconventional and tough upbringing just a few miles along the coast, helping the author Gavin Maxwell bring up three otters, a story immortalised in the best-selling book and film Ring of Bright Water.

"Terry was irresistibly drawn back to this magical place to live and, eventually, die.

"Terry had a huge love of life and an almost mystical connection with nature and animals. Even when one of the otters he looked after bit off part of a finger on each hand. he didn't blame the animal at all, just his own stupidity in reaching out to the otter while holding a cardigan full of the scent of a visitor to the cottage.

"He was a natural communicator - larger than life, incredibly warm and full of knowledge and enthusiasm about the natural world.

"Like other BBC producers, I quickly learned not to try to tame him. He hated reading from scripts, but was brilliant at talking off-the-cuff and with great authority.

"Perhaps unusually for a celebrity, it gave him great pleasure to be recognised, spending whole evenings sharing his passion about animals - and his irreverent sense of humour - with a rapt audience of complete strangers down the pub.

"The world has lost a huge, inspirational character but his spirit shines brightly in the natural world he loved so much."

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