Blankety Blank presenter Bradley Walsh has paid tribute to the gameshow's former host Paul O'Grady.

Walsh, 63, hailed the late presenter as "an irreplaceable class act" as the first series of Blankety Blank aired since his passing in March.

Viewers will remember that O'Grady transformed into his drag alter ego Lily Savage to host the iconic game show.

Paul O'Grady hosted the programme between 1998 and 2002.

The incoming co-host of the Gladiators reboot has fronted the revival of the game show since 2021.

Following Paul's sudden death aged 67 earlier this year,  Bradley Walsh paid a touching tribute to the TV legend as the programme returned at the weekend.

Paul O'Grady 'was an absolute genius', Bradley Walsh says

He told The Sun's TV Mag: "Paul was an absolute genius, and his passing is a great loss.

"There was something so wonderful about his character Lily Savage. She had the most cutting tongue and could get away with just about anything. I was lucky enough to feature as a contestant on the show when Lily was presenting. Paul was an irreplaceable class act."

Meanwhile, Paul's career will be the focus of a new ITV documentary.

The popular TV presenter is set to be remembered with a new special that will chart his journey from edgy drag queen Lily Savage to a beloved chat show host.

A source told The Sun newspaper's Bizarre TV column: "He occupies a special place in the hearts of everyone at ITV and this is part of paying further tribute to him.

"This is an interesting angle to take to look back on Paul’s career, but making the leap from edgy drag queen to a household name and star of teatime telly is a story worth exploring."