TRIBUTES have come in from around the world for Terry Uttley, founding member of Bradford rock band Smokie, who has died following a short illness. 

A statement on Smokie's website said: "It is with very heavy hearts and tear-filled eyes that we share the news that our beloved friend and bandmate, Terry, has passed away after a short illness. Steve, Martin, Mick and Pete are devastated and deeply saddened by his sudden and unexpected passing. Terry was a dear friend, a loving father, and was an incredible person and musician. We all feel extremely lucky to have shared such a long lifetime and the stage with him."

Smokie was founded more than 50 years ago when Terry was at St Bede's School in Heaton with Alan Silson and Chris Norman.

They played local clubs under various names, including The Elizabethans, and got their break signing with Mickey Most's RAK label as Smokey (later Smokie). In the 1970s they had Top 10 hits such as If You Think You Know How To Love Me and Oh Carol. 

"The first couple of times Alan and Chris asked me to join the band I said no, I had a job as an apprentice at Fields Printers in Lidget Green," Terry told the T&A in 2006. "But the third time they asked me I said yes."

Smokie split in 1981 but reformed in 1986 for a fundraising concert for relatives of people who died in the Bradford City fire.

Alan Barton replaced singer Chris Norman, who had left to go solo. In 1995 Alan died when a tour bus carrying Smokie crashed in Germany. The band later continued with Mike Craft as frontman and were back in the charts with Roy 'Chubby' Brown's version of their hit Living Next Door To Alice.

Smokie toured extensively over the years, selling over 30 million records worldwide.

A huge live act in Europe and the Far East, they were made honorary citizens of Seoul after becoming the first Western band to sell a million singles there. They toured countries such as Mongolia, Uruguay and China and were the first international band to play in Greenland. In 2005 they played at the Kremlin for Russian president Vladimir Putin.

For many years Smokie hosted a gala dinner dance at Craiglands Hotel in Ilkley, raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for the Annette Fox Leukaemia Fund. 

Terry died on Friday, aged 70, just weeks after the death of his wife, Shirley. 

Fans from around the world have been leaving tributes on social media. Leanne Standen in Australia wrote: "Woke to devastating news that Terry Uttley has passed away...he was such a kind man and took time out for all his fans. He made you feel special and truly believed that his fans were most important. You are a great loss to the fans all over the world."

Pay your tributes to Terry Uttley here

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Community contributor

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Really sad news. Thank you for the music. R.I.P. Terry.

Lynn Cox

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You are with Shirley now Terry, may you both rest in peace. Thanks for the music and the memories. x

david smith

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RIP Terry thanks for the memories

Corinne Laghaney

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R.I.P Terry. Play your rock and roll for the angels xx

Gavin Patterson

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What an amazing talent but more importantly what a genuinely lovely and humble soul Terry was. Proud to have known you my friend RIP with your lovely Shirley x

Steven

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R.I.P. Terry ..the world has lost a genius of a musician who brought love and great joy to the world .. and Bradford has lost a great son ..

john westbury

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1 knew Terry from his band kindness around the Bradford clubs r.i.p.sad day.

Community contributor

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RIP Terry. We loved your music which always brightened up our days especially when taking our girls out for the day and we would play your great songs in the car when we would all sing along together. Attended your concerts when you were in Cork and those were really fun-filled and enjoyable. Thank you for these moments.

Michael (Mick) Tiernan

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Keep on singing with the angels Tuts, we shall all miss you. Your music and our memories of you will live on.

Community contributor

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RIP Terry & Shirley ❤💙

Tony Sutcliffe

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Met Terry when I was just 16 and now at the age of 62 can say he helped provide me with the soundtrack of my life. Goodbye dear friend you will be sadly missed!

Community contributor

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I Remember him when he used to visit his Grandfather on the Lower Grange Estate. Me and my mates followed the band all round clubland and when they were known as the Elizabethan's playing at Edmund Campion School. He will be sadly missed. RIP Terry.

Kevin Fieldhouse

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Known Terry and the band since they played BecKhill W.MC. in the late 60s. May he be at peace now and his family and the band thank God for his time with them.

Community contributor

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R.I.P. Terry my old friend from the Hole in the Wall days. You were a lovely happy lad, always smiling. God bless you love from "Coconut"

Community contributor

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Terry was a great bass player with a great band will be sadly missed

Clyde Briggs

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Very sad news, I've known Terry since early teens what a top guy.Always had time to talk to you. Goodbye old friend you will be sorely missed.R.I.P.