Richard Davey dies at 74

Written By miftah nugraha on Rabu, 13 Maret 2013 | 19.55

Richard Davey on the set of The Ship That Never Was in 2009. Picture: CHRIS KIDD

ENTERTAINER extraordinaire Richard Davey -- hailed as an icon of Tasmanian tourism and the arts -- has died.

Tourism Industry Council Tasmania chairman Simon Currant said the actor and playwright, who was 74, died today after a battle with illness.

He said the value of Davey's contribution to tourism, particularly in Strahan on the state's West Coast, was nothing short of extraordinary.

"The Ship that Never Was is Australia's longest continually running theatre production and Richard was in Strahan in December to see it performed for the 5000th time," Mr Currant said in a statement this afternoon.

"Richard wrote and directed the play, and personally performed more than half the productions over the past two decades."

"In the early 90s he also reinvented the Sarah Island tour, bringing the remarkable history of the Macquarie Harbor penal settlement to life through an entertaining mix of history and drama.

"In rain, hail, sleet and shine, Richard conducted his tours and performed his plays, entertaining hundreds of thousands of visitors to Tasmania over the years."

Late last year, Davey was awarded the Tourism Champion Award at a state awards ceremony for his remarkable contribution to local tourism.

Mr Currant offered the industry's condolences to Davey's family and many friends.

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