The Apprentice star Alan Sugar has paid tribute to his late sister Shirley, who he said had become "another victim of Covid" just two weeks after the death of their brother Derek, who had also contracted the disease.

Writing on Twitter, the 73-year-old entrepreneur said: "My eldest sister Shirley passed away today at the age of 88.

"She had been sick for a while but I guess Covid got her in the end to join our brother Derek, who passed two weeks ago. RIP SHIRL."  

He added on Instagram: "I guess another victim of Covid." 

On 15 December, Sugar had tweeted: "Today I lost my long-suffering brother Derek, another victim of Covid which added to his underlying health issues."

The Press Association adds that this year's series of The Apprentice was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The show usually airs in October, with Sugar revealing his new business partner in December.

"We can't be sending people across the world for tasks, or going out on the street to sell items," he said when the postponement was announced. "It's really unfortunate but had to happen."