Tributes paid to Newcastle music legend Geoff Wonfor who won Grammy for The Beatles Anthology

Geoff Wonfor, from Newcastle, has died. Credit: PA

A Grammy award winning director whose work includes The Beatles Anthology and music programme The Tube has died.

Geoff Wonfor, from Newcastle, was a well-known figure in the Newcastle entertainment scene.

Mr Wonfor had worked with many big names in British music, and won a Grammy for best music video for his work on The Beatles Anthology.

He directed the video for Band Aid 20: Do They Know It's Christmas? in 2004, working with artists like Coldplay's Chris Martin and Robbie Williams 20 years on from the original single.

He was also behind The Tube, which was broadcast live from Newcastle’s Tyne Tees Television studios for Channel 4 in the 1980s.

The Jam performing in the famous Studio 5 at Tyne Tees Television. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Created with his wife Andrea, who died in 2004, and Malcolm Gerrie, the music programme was presented by Jools Holland and Paula Yates. It featured stars including Madonna, Elton John, Tina Turner, U2, Culture Club, The Jam, Bon Jovi, Paul McCartney and Dire Straits.

Graeme Thompson, former managing director of Tyne Tees, said: "Geoff was a legend at Tyne Tees when I was there. He'd obviously become really well known for the Tube on Channel 4 but he had also carved out a really successful career in the music industry where he worked with people like Prince, he was very good friends with the Beatles and Paul McCartney in particular and the great thing about Geoff was that he would bring all of this work back to the North East."

Geoff Wonfor with wife Andrea, getting her OBE at Buckingham Palace, with her daughters Abi (left) and Sam. Credit: PA

He spent many years working on charity concerts too. He was the director and producer for Sunday for Sammy, which raises money to support young performers in the North East, and Another Knight to Remember which raised money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

Paying tribute to Mr Wonfor, Ray Laidlaw, from the band Lindisfarne, who is also involved in Sunday for Sammy, said: "A big man in every way, a true innovator who changed how music was seen on TV. Most of all a dear friend who taught me so much."

A statement on the Sunday for Sammy Facebook page said: "He was a huge presence, and we'll miss him so much. Love to all his family, friends and colleagues."

Geoff Wonfor, centre, was involved with North East charity event Sunday for Sammy Credit: Sunday for Sammy

Friends and fans have been sharing their tributes to Mr Wonfor on social media, describing him as a genius and great creative mind, known for his "belting anecdotes".

Radio presenter Geoff Floyd tweeted: "The Beatles could have chosen any director in the world to tell their story, and they went with this straight-talking Geordie, mostly known for a cult British TV music show. They had a knack for finding the right people. Geoff Wonfor RIP."

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