The beloved children’s TV star and entertainer played Wilfred Mott, the grandfather of the Doctor’s companion Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) between 2007 and 2010 and is set to appear in a 2023 episode celebrating the programme’s 60th anniversary.
Barrowman, who played Captain Jack Harkness in the hit BBC show and its spin-off Torchwood, praised Curbins as a “teacher and mentor” who taught him “comic timing and the subtleties of stagecraft”. show
The actor posted on Instagram, “When I started my career in Anything Goes in 1989, Bernard Curbins was by my side as a great co-star but also as a teacher and mentor who taught me comedic timing and the stage. Showed the subtleties of the craft.”
“Not to mention where to get the best fish and chips and custard cream donuts in Soho over the two show days – and oh our toffee eating competition before going on stage.”
He continued: “Bernie was a true entertainer with an amazing career that many can only dream of.
“Every show, when I received my MBE, or if it was just an article in the newspaper he read that mentioned me, he’d pick up the phone and chat and say congratulations or He used to give his insight on what to celebrate or navigate.
“Bernard Curbins was a friend, our doctor who was part of the family, and a national treasure.”
Barrowman added: “I’m in tears writing this. I’ll miss him and our phone calls.
“Bernie love you.”
Doctor Who showrunner Russell T. Davies shared a photo of Curbins sporting a snot in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
He wrote: “He loved being in Doctor Who. He said ‘The kids are calling me Grandpa in the street!’ His first day was on location with Kylie Minogue, but all eyes, even Kylie’s, were on Bernard.
“He came with a suitcase full of props, just in case, including a rubber chicken. And what an actor. Oh, really, though, what an amazing actor. We saw him once at the TV Choice Awards. I took it and sent him to collect the award himself, and the whole room stood and cheered him on.
“It’s a beautiful memory. He’ll call and say ‘I’ve got an idea! What if I attack a Dalek with a paintball gun?!’ Well, Bernard, go to it!
Davies said he felt “very lucky” to have known Cribbins, adding: “Thanks for everything, my old soldier. A legend has left the world.
Sim, who played villainous rogue Time Lord The Master in Doctor Who, also paid tribute on Instagram, writing: “Goodbye Bernard. Loved him. He’d happily do all the Wombles sounds on command… Actually me. Going back in time, literally!
“I am forever in your debt @russelltdavies63 for giving me the opportunity to meet/know/work with him. What a man. What an actor. What a life! A true legend. God bless him.”
Doctor Who author Mark Gates also paid tribute, writing on Twitter: “There was no one like Kerbins. A gifted comedian with an incredible seam of pathos and genuine heart.
“From Sellers to Star Turn, from Wombles to Wolf. I spoke to him once about his beautiful performance in Hammer’s ‘She’. That afternoon he was off to play 5 A Side – which He was about 90 years old.
Doctor Who actress Georgia Tennant, who is also the daughter of Fifth Doctor Peter Davison and wife of Tenth Doctor David Tennant, paid a brief tribute on Instagram.
He said: “There aren’t many people in this world who inspire you to name more than one child after them. That’s how Bernard was magical.
A message posted on the official Doctor Who Twitter page added: “We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Bernard Curbins.
“Best known to fans as the Doctor’s friend and Donna’s grandfather Wilfred Mott, Bernard has left a long legacy in film and TV.”
Figures from Cribbins’ time as a children’s TV presenter also shared their memories of him.
Dame Floella Benjamin tweeted: “I loved working with #BernardCribbins in the 80s.
“He was a creative genius, a great storyteller and knew how to interact with an audience. He has left a lasting legacy.”
One of his most memorable stage roles was playing Moonface Martin in Anything Goes opposite Elaine Paige at the Prince Edward Theater in 1989.
Musical theater star Paige said: “I am so sad. My dear friend Bernard Curbins has passed away. We met on Anything Goes and maintained our ‘friendship’ for over 33 years.
“A very special man of many talents. Funny, kind, genuine, always had a smile on his face and a sense of humor. One of the nicest people. I will miss him dearly.”
Lyricist Sir Tim Rice, best known for his work on shows such as Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat with Andrew Lloyd Webber, also remembered Cribbins for his turn in Anything Goes.
He tweeted: “RIP Bernard Curbins. Brilliant film/theatre actor. Sweet kid.
“I know him co-producing Anything Goes w/@elaine_paige (a rare example of my co-production not losing a packet).
“BC a wonderful Monface Martin. And his great hit records… Hole in the Ground, Right Sad Fred.”
Tributes have also flowed in from the music world, with artists such as Boy George and 1990s band Rite Sid Fred, sharing their memories online and naming themselves after their hit novelty song.