Only Fools and Horses John Challis poignant words on death in last interview

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John Challis movingly mused about death in his final interview – saying he would "miss everything" about life.

The Only Fools And Horses star, who died aged 79 this month after a two-year cancer battle, also revealed his terror of Covid-19 and how he snubbed an offer to appear on Strictly.

John was best known for playing Terrance 'Boycie' Boyce in the popular British sitcom which aired in the 1980s.

Speaking from his country home in Hertfordshire, he said: "The lights are going to go out and you’re going to miss this, you’re going to miss that.

"Whatever frustrations there are – there are always problems, the way life goes – and people go through extraordinary times. But I think I’d miss that.

"I’d miss the sea life and sky, and also those wonderful early days of getting up on stage for the first time."

John spoke as part of a promotion for the release of his Boycie In Belgrade documentary on DVD and on streaming services. The chat turned out to be his last before he fell seriously ill.

John said he wasn’t "feeling great" about the Covid-19 pandemic which was dominating the news at the time.

And he snubbed offers to do Strictly Come Dancing, revealing: "I couldn’t get through that at my age.

"I’m no dancer anyway, so I’d be the Ed Balls figure of fun."

John added in the chat he thought his epitaph should be: "I had that adventure."

Despite the fact that he loved playing "comedic characters", John said he yearned to take on some more series roles in the future.

John's interview on The Bill podcast, which was released the day before his death, heard Challis admit his unfulfilled wish: "there's a part of me that wants to do a really searing serious role.

"To sit down and be a dad whose daughter has done wrong, or misbehaving or something like that. I've got a hankering to do that as well," he said.

John landed the role of second-hand car dealer Boycie in 1981 and went on to star in the series for ten years, appearing in numerous Christmas and one-off specials over the years.

The actor later starred in the spin-off series The Green Green Grass which ran from 2005 to 2009.

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  • Strictly Come Dancing
  • Cancer

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