Kelly, Frank

Frank Kelly (1938-2016) was an Irish writer, actor, singer and entertainer who had a 60 year career on stage, screen, TV and radio in Ireland and the United Kingdom.

Though best known for his role as Father Jack Hackett in the Channel 4 sitcom ‘Father Ted’; he became a household name through the RTÉ satirical show ‘Hall’s Pictorial Weekly’ and the RTÉ children’s programme ‘Wanderly Wagon'.

Amongst Kelly’s other TV appearances, he had roles in the RTÉ Irish language programme Anois is Arís, RTÉ's soap Glenroe, and ITV's Emmerdale, to name but a few. Many of his comedy sketches came from ‘The Glen Abbey Show’ on RTÉ Radio 1. He also appeared as an unnamed prison officer in the opening sequence of The Italian Job in 1969 and had a chart hit with A Christmas Countdown, a comedy version of the 12 Days of Christmas written by Hugh Leonard.

He was born in Blackrock, County Dublin  where he spent most of his life there. His father, Charles was a cartoonist and founder of the satirical magazine Dublin Opinion. Kelly was married to the drama teacher Bairbre Neldon and they had seven children. 

He died on 28 February 2016.