Butler's last stop

Reg Varney dies at 92

On The Buses star Reg Varney has died at the age of 92.

The actor, who played scheming bus driver Stan Butler in the hit ITV sitcom, died ‘peacefully’ in a nursing home in Budleigh Salterton, Devon, where he had recently been admitted with a chest infection.

Varney had lived in Devon for the past 20 years, and had lived alone since his wife Lilian died in 2002.

His daughter Jeanne Marley told the BBC News: ‘He's always been very young for his age. When he was in On The Buses he was playing a 35-year-old, but he was actually 50.’

Varney was born in East London and became involved in showbusiness during the Second World War, entertaining the troops.

His first major role was in the BBC sitcom The Rag Trade, in 1961, and he starred alongside Pat Coombs and June Whitfield in another comedy, Beggar My Neighbour, in 1966. On The Buses ran for seven years from 1969 and spawned three films.

He also had the bizarre claim to fame of opening the first ATM cash dispenser in Enfield, north London, in 1967.

Here he is in action:

Published: 16 Nov 2008

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