ACTOR Peter Gilmore, who headed the cast of BBC seafaring drama The Onedin Line, has died aged 81.

The star, who also appeared in a number of Carry On films, died at the Trinity Hospice in London after a long illness.

German-born Gilmore also clocked up appearances in TV dramas such as Doctor Who, The Persuaders, Ruth Rendell Mysteries and Heartbeat.

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But he will be best remembered for his portrayal of James Onedin in The Onedin Line.

Gilmore was married to actress Una Stubbs for more than a decade and went on to marry Anne Stallybrass, who played his wife in the show.