'The Good Life' & 'As Time Goes By' Writer, Bob Larbey, Dies Aged 79

Bob Larbey, the co- writer of the classic British sitcom The Good Life, has died. Larbey's agent confirmed his death to the BBC on Saturday (5th April). Larbey died in London on 31st March at the age of 79.

Larbey worked alongside his comedy writing partner John Esmonde (who died in 2008) for over thirty years and collaborated on a number of shows which have come to be regarded as quintessentially British classics. The Good Life which starred Richard Briers and Felicity Kendal as a couple who, whilst living in suburbia next to their nosy and materialistic neighbours (played by Penelope Keith and Paul Eddington), attempt to lead a self-sufficient, natural life. The series became Larbey and Esmonde's most successful series, running for over three years and attracting audiences in their millions.

Read more: Felicity Kendal: "I Regret Losing Touch With Richard Briers".

Larbey was also responsible for A Fine Romance and As Time Goes By which became staples of British television over the course of thirty years. Larbey's writing, both on his solo and joint projects, has been highly praised with many commenting on his ability to portray typical scenarios in relationships with gentle humour and from a unique perspective. As the BBC reports, one commentator Simon Blackwell (The Thick Of It) said Larbey and Esmonde had penned "some of the funniest and most perceptive sitcoms" of recent times. 

Larbey worked on a number of occasions with Dame Judi Dench throughout the 1980s and 90s. He created A Fine Romance in which she starred opposite her husband Michael Williams. Dench played a socially awkward middle aged woman who is set up with an equally deserved gardener (played by Williams). Much as with Larbey's other project which Dench starred in, As Time Goes By, in which she was forced to endure the constant irritation of her husband (Geoffrey Palmer) as they negotiated a whole host of social situations. 

Read more: The Good Life: Legendary TV Actor Richard Briers Dies Aged 79.

Contactmusic send their condolences to Bob Larbey's family, friends and colleagues. 

Geoffrey Palmer
Geoffrey Palmer starred in As Time Goes By, written by Bob Larbey.

Felicity Kendal
Felicity Kendal also starred in one of Bob Larbey's sitcoms The Good Life.


Tags: Judi Dench - Geoffrey Palmer - Felicity Kendal - Michael Williams


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