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01 September 2020 22:32

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Latest news straight to your inbox Subscribe Thank you for subscribing We have more newsletters Show me See our privacy notice Invalid Email Ant and Dec have paid tribute to Britain's Got Talent warm-up star Ian Royce, describing the comedian as an "integral part" of the team. Royce died on Tuesday from "severe pneumonia and multiple organ failure," according to a statement on his official Twitter account. It said: "It is with our greatest regret that we have to tell you all that Ian has passed away today from severe pneumonia and multiple organ failure. Britain's Got Talent hosts Ant and Dec shared a tribute on social media. "We are sorry to hear of the passing of Ian 'Roycey' Royce," the presenting duo said.

"He was an integral part of the #BGT team for many years. We'll never forget you. Royce had previously revealed he was an alcoholic and shared an appeal online to raise funds for rehab. The post has since been flooded with messages of support and condolence. Ian, who kept audiences entertained with his famous humour, checked into rehab late last year for sex addiction.

He received treatment at The Priory, the bill partly footed by his showbiz pals including Ant & Dec, Simon Cowell, Olly Murs and Robbie Williams. In a lengthy post, he confirmed his condition and told fans he was getting the help he needed. In September last year, he tagged stars including Ant and Dec, Simon Cowell and Robbie Williams, saying: "I am so grateful to so many for saving my life....." He added: "Thank you for a light....." Ian Royce has died (Picture: ITV) Britain's Got Talent star Ian Royce has died. Ian worked as a warm-up artist for popular ITV shows The X Factor and BGT, as well as working as a stand-up comedian. His death was announced this evening via a statement on his official Twitter account. It read: 'It with our greatest regret that we have to tell you all that Ian has passed away today from severe pneumonia and multiple organ failure. 'He was in no pain and surrounded by friends and family. The entertainer previously candidly opened up about his battle with depression earlier this year, sharing that he had 'struggled' and 'hit rock bottom' after losing his voice. Advertisement His statement read: 'It's been a long week, in fact a long year… I'm sat at rock bottom and there is only one way now and that is up… to a light. It is with our greatest regret that we have to tell you all that Ian has passed away today from severe pneumonia and multiple organ failure. He was in no pain and was surrounded by friends and family. He put up a good fight but is in a better place now. Roxanne x — Ian Royce (@officialroycey) September 1, 2020 We are sorry to hear of the passing of Ian ‘Roycey’ Royce. (@officialroycey) He was an integral part of the #BGT team for many years. RIP Roycey. We’ll never forget you. X — antanddec (@antanddec) September 1, 2020 Britain's Got Talent's hosts, Geordie duo Ant and Dec, have also paid tribute to Royce, calling him 'an integral part' of the show. Posting on their Twitter account, the boys wrote: 'We are sorry to hear of the passing of Ian "Roycey" Royce. 'He was an integral part of the Britain's Got Talent team for many years. Our thoughts are with his beloved Roxy and all his family. 'RIP Roycey, we'll never forget you.' The comedian previously struggled after losing his voice (Picture: REX) 'Truth is when [you're] at rock bottom [you're] surrounded by darkness and so hard to see any light, but I know the light is out there somewhere and I'll fight to find it again… Fight I will.' Ian explained: 'Last year I lost my voice, thus my everything. My living, my personality, my being… My everything, but fight I will to get it back. In fact all of my darkness I want to walk away from.' Adding that he is grateful for all the support others have shown him recently, Ian said: 'Thank you to all of you for shining a light in my darkness, it means so very much and I am truly grateful… I truly am… let my climb begin. 'Come with me… [it's] easier to climb as a group than alone. Ian xx.' Last year, Ian announced that he was entering rehab to combat sex addiction. His stay at the London clinic The Priory was bankrolled by some of the stars of BGT and The X Factor, including Simon Cowell, Ant and Dec and Olly Murs. Got a story? If you've got a celebrity story, video or pictures get in touch with the Metro.co.uk Entertainment team by emailing us [email protected], calling 020 3615 2145 or by visiting our Submit Stuff page – we'd love to hear from you. MORE: DJ Erick Morillo dies aged 49 MORE: Alison Hammond and Josie Gibson to front This Morning spin-off – let the chaos commence