Tributes have been flooding in from the worlds of politics and entertainment following the death of Harold Pinter on Christmas Eve.

The 78-year-old Nobel Prize-winning writer, who was known as a playwright, poet, actor and director, was a respected figure throughout the industry following a 50-year career.

Pinter was most famous for his plays, including the Caretaker, the Birthday Party and Betrayal.

And accolades have been paid by several senior figures after his wife, Lady Antonia Fraser, announced he had died from cancer on Wednesday.

Lady Antonia told the Guardian newspaper: "He was a great, and it was a privilege to live with him for over 33 years.

"He will never be forgotten."

One of Britain's foremost classical actors Sir Michael Gambon, who appeared in many of Pinter's plays, added: "He was our God, Harold Pinter, for actors.

"He was the man who wrote the plays you wanted to be in."

Former actress Glenda Jackson described the playwright's death as "a great loss to the theatre… and to those people who fight for human rights".

BBC creative director Alan Yentob, speaking to the corporation's news channel, added: "He was a unique figure in British theatre.

"He has dominated the theatre scene since the 1950s."

26/12/2008 10:31:43