Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Police 5's Shaw Taylor dies at Isle of Wight home

Shaw Taylor Image copyright John Hannam
Image caption Shaw Taylor died at his home in Totland on the Isle of Wight

The presenter of ITV's Police 5, which ran for 30 years, has died.

Shaw Taylor pioneered the use of the public to help solve crimes by contacting the programme, which he fronted from its launch in 1962.

He was 90 and died at his home in Totland, on the Isle of Wight, on Wednesday, with his partner Shirley Ferrari by his side.

Mr Taylor became famous on the programme with his catchphrase "keep 'em peeled".

His friend John Hannam, of Isle of Wight Radio, met him 20 years ago when he moved to the island.

'True gent'

"He loved his catchphrase being thrown back at him," Mr Hannam said.

"He loved it if people called out in the street, he was in his element.

"He was one of the true gents of the industry, it was a privilege to know him."

During his later years, the presenter was a keen supporter of local charities and helped save the Isle of Wight's popular Shanklin Theatre from closure.

Image copyright Twitter
Image caption Many took to Twitter to pay tribute to Mr Taylor

Peter Coleman, chairman of the friends of the theatre, said Mr Taylor played a "key role" in saving the venue and would be sorely missed.

Born Eric Taylor in the East End of London, he served in the RAF and later trained at the prestigious Rada acting school.

He acted for a spell on stage in the West End before becoming a TV and radio presenter.

It was as the popular host of the crime-solving show Police 5 that he became best known and he was made an MBE in 1986.

He is survived by his son, Richard, and by his partner, Ms Ferrari.

'Unflappable pioneer'

Former police officer and Crimewatch presenter Rav Wilding said: "Very sad news to hear about Shaw Taylor. He was TV's original crime fighter, and his famous line 'keep 'em peeled' is something that all police officers are taught from day one.

"Thoughts with his family."

Actor Graham Cole, best known as PC Tony Stamp in ITV police drama The Bill, tweeted: "Sad to hear another lovely man leaves us, Shaw Taylor, many of us grew up with Shaw "keep em peeled"."

Former detective and Crimewatch host Jacqui Hames tweeted: "So sad to hear of passing of #ShawTaylor a legend & so helpful to me when I was prepping for @BBCCrimewatch audition #KeepEmPeeled"

Television historian Louis Barfe described Mr Taylor as a "benign, authoritative figure".

He said: "Like many, I grew up thinking he was a senior copper. It was some time before I found out he'd been an actor and announcer in the early days of commercial TV.

"One of those great unflappable pioneers of live broadcasting. We shall not see his like again, no matter how much we keep 'em peeled."

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