Writer John Sullivan dies at the age of 64

Only Fools and HorsesTelevision writer John Sullivan, whose credits include the Only Fools and Horses franchise, has died at the age of 64 it has been announced.

The BBC said the prolific writer had suffered from a short illness. While he is perhaps best known for creating Only Fools and Horses his other work also includes popular comedies such as Just Good Friends starring Jan Francis and Paul Nicholas as well as Roger, Roger which starred Keith Allen and Robert Daws. It goes without saying that by far Sullivan’s most popular and enduring creation is Only Fools and Horses which starred David Jason and Nicholas Lyndhurst.

Only Fools and Horses launched in 1981 and ran for seven seasons which also included several Christmas Specials in the early 2000’s. The comedy was seen by millions of people each week with 25 million viewers tuning in one for episode of the series. Perhaps given its success with audiences its unsurprising that a spin-off series was ordered by the BBC. The Green Green Grass started in 2005 but was cancelled in 2009 in a shake up of the BBC’s schedules. It starred John Challis and Sue Holderness who continuing their characters of Boycie and Marlene living as country squires. More recently a Rock and Chipsprequel to Only Fools has aired several specials on BBC One; Rock and Chips. The prequel, which also stars Lyndhurst, is due to air an additional special next week.

Amongst Sullivan’s various other writing credits was the ITV historical comedy Micawber starring David Jason. Sullivan also penned Citizen Smith, which starred Robert Lindsay, and Dear John which featured Belinda Lang and Ralph Bates.

John Sullivan; 1946 – 2011.