Sylvie Gatrill dead: Brookside, Bread and The Responder actress passes away following cancer battle

Sylvie Gatrill has died.

The Bread- who played the Boswells’ neighbour Mrs Edith Cullen – passed away at the age 70 on Thursday, following a cancer battle.

The Liverpool Echo confirmed her death, with tributes soon pouring in for the talented actress, who also owned a well-known talent agency in her home city of Liverpool.

Sad news: Sylvie Gatrill has died following a cancer battle

Sylvie played the Boswells’ neighbour Mrs Edith Cullen, in Carla Lane’s hit comedy series, Bread. She also played Lesley Donnelly in Brookside in 1995.

She also starred in ITV’s 2017 drama Little Boy Blue, which is about the murder of 11-year-old Rhys Jones who was shot and killed while walking home from football practice. 

Sylvie appeared alongside Richard Harris and Lynn Redgrave in a screen adaptation of King Lear, My Kingdom. 

Most recently, she was on screen in BBC One’s The Responder, appearing as troubled dog owner Mary, alongside Martin Freeman. 

Iconic role: Sylvie played the Boswells' neighbour Mrs Cullen, in Carla Lane's hit comedy series, Bread (pictured)

Iconic role: Sylvie played the Boswells’ neighbour Mrs Cullen, in Carla Lane’s hit comedy series, Bread (pictured)

As well as her acting career, Sylvie ran training and talent agency Allstars Casting, and taught youngsters at Dolphin Dance Studios to sing and act.

Over the last few years, she directed in-house plays at St Helens Theatre Royal and The Epstein Theatre for Regal Entertainments. 

As news of Sylvie’s death broke, tributes poured in on social media.

Director Mark Moraghan tweeted: ‘Sad to hear my old pal Sylvie Gatrill has passed away. What a character and positive force she was RIP.’  

Tony Nyland – who starred with Sylvie in Bread – wrote: ‘I’ve just heard the sad news that the lovely, talented Sylvie Gatrill has died.

‘Sylvie and me had a great time playing Edith and Hesketh Cullen in The BBC series ‘Bread.’ Deepest condolences to her family and friends.’ 

The Responder writer, Tony Schumacher tweeted: So sorry to hear of the passing of the quite brilliant Sylvie Gatrill. Such a talented actress who was so important in helping set the tone of #TheResponder. My thoughts are with her family. #RIP.’  

Sonny Beyga, the young actor who played Rhys Jones in Little Boy Blue, wrote a tribute, crediting the actress, teacher and agent with his career: ‘Rest in peace Sylvie, you were the reason I am where I am today with my acting career,’ the rising star wrote. 

Talented: Most recently, she was on screen in BBC One’s The Responder (pictured), appearing as troubled dog owner Mary, alongside Martin Freeman

Sonny’s mum also commented and said: ‘Sylvie was a diamond, my son’s agent and teacher at her drama class. She got my son the part in Little Boy Blue playing Rhys Jones. Sonny and I are broken.’

Regal Entertainments’ Jane Joseph – who knew Sylvie for 50 years – penned an emotional tribute to her late friend: ‘This beautiful woman, both inside and out, was a wonderful and sincere friend to me. Always the most quirky of people, Sylvie was unique in every way, dressing in a style she made her own’.

‘We loved her for her thick mane of strawberry blonde hair, dressed up in plaits and ponytails in styles that were amazingly self-invented. Sylvie directed in a style of her own too – it wasn’t unusual to see her laying on the floor to see things ‘from a different angle and to check her auditorium sight lines.’ 

Tributes: As news of Sylvie's death broke, tributes poured in on social media

Tributes: As news of Sylvie’s death broke, tributes poured in on social media

‘I will miss my long afternoon chats with her putting the world to rights and reminiscing about our wonderful days back at Shelagh Elliott Clarke together, but most recently trying to support and comfort her throughout her darkest moments of worry about her illness that she kept so private and only those most close to her knew about.’

Actor and former pupil of Sylvie, AJ Jones wrote on Twitter: ‘Sylvie Gatrill❤️ Such a special lady, Taught so many kids from our city at her agency, Allstars.

‘Helped us get our first credits and trained us for professional life. Her legacy will live on through all of us she inspired and taught! A true Liverpool Legend! RIP Sylv xxx’