The actor Richard Franklin, who played Captain Mike Yates in 43 episodes of Doctor Who, has died at the age of 87.
As one of the UNIT personnel, Franklin was a key character in the team which developed in the third Doctor era, led by Jon Pertwee, as a sidekick to Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart and a love interest for Jo Grant.
Richard Franklin made his debut as Mike Yates in the eighth series of Doctor Who, appearing in four of the series' five stories, Terror of the Autons, The Mind of Evil, The Claws of Axos and the story often designated as a favourite by members of the cast The Dæmons.
The character was back in the following year appearing in Day of the Daleks and The Time Monster before returning in the last three episodes of series 10, The Green Death
In Pertwee's final season, the character of Yates found himself on the opposite side to the Doctor in Invasion of the Dinosaurs believing in a project to return the earth to a golden age. His final appearance in Planet of the Spiders saw the characters' redemption.
Richard Franklin died early on Christmas morning after a long illness. His death was announced by family friend Liam Rudden on Social Media
Richard Franklin was born in Marylebone, London, on 15 January 1936. He was educated at Westminster School and Oxford University before training as an actor at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
His early work was in the theatre where he spent six years in repertory theatre. His break into television came in 1969 when he was cast as Joe Townsend in the soap opera Crossroads, appearing in thirty-six episodes.
Other roles included parts in Dixon of Dock Green, The Saint, Little Women, The Borgias and Blake's 7
He returned to Doctor Who in audio productions for BBC Audio and Big Finish and made a cameo in the 20th Anniversary story The Five Doctors.
Katy Manning, who played Jo Grant in the series was a good friend and collogue of Franklin, paid tribute on x.