Paul O’Grady has died aged 67 with his husband Andre Portasio confirming the news in a statement shared with the PA News Agency.

Mr Portasio said in his statement: “It is with great sadness that I inform you that Paul has passed away unexpectedly but peacefully yesterday evening.

“We ask, at this difficult time, that whilst you celebrate his life you also respect our privacy as we come to terms with this loss.

“He will be greatly missed by his loved ones, friends, family, animals and all those who enjoyed his humour, wit and compassion.

“I know that he would want me to thank you for all the love you have shown him over the years.”

Peeblesshire News: Paul O'Grady has died aged 67Paul O'Grady has died aged 67 (Image: PA Wire/PA Images)

Who is Andre Portasio?

Paul O’Grady’s partner, Andre Portasio, is a former professional ballerina, The Sun reports.

Portasio was once a performer with the English National Ballet, according to the newspaper.

The pair’s relationship began in 2006 and they married in 2017 in a low-key wedding ceremony.

O’Grady’s love for animals was clear to see and he had lived in a farmhouse in Kent with Portasio along with four dogs, goats, sheep, chickens and barn owls.

Tributes paid to Paul O’Grady following death aged 67

Lorraine Kelly, Piers Morgan and Carol Vorderman are among those paying tribute to Paul O’Grady.

Lorraine Kelly tweeted: “Such sad news. Paul O’Grady - funny, fearless, brave, kind and wise. Will be sorely missed. A really special man.”

Piers Morgan shared a tweet, writing: “RIP Paul O'Grady, 67. A wonderfully warm, mischievous, hilarious guy with a sublime natural talent for broadcasting and making people laugh.”

Along with a black heart emoji and a red broken heart emoji, Carol Vorderman tweeted: “Paul O'Grady

“Already giving them raucous, ripping up the rulebook, mischief making, calling it out, loving hell in heaven

“Paul, what are we meant to do without you?”

With a red heart emoji, Vernon Kay tweeted: “Paul O’Grady was one of the nicest and kindest people I’ve ever met. Always a joy to be around and obviously, so much fun. He will be missed. Telly and friends have lost one of the best….RIP”