Ray Butt, a top British Tv producer who worked on beloved U.K. sitcom Only Fools And Horses, has passed away at the age of 78.

Butt died last Friday (12Jul13). No further details surrounding his death have been released.

After leaving national service in the Royal Air Force (Raf), Butt became a Tv director, and first met writer John Sullivan when they both worked on comedy Citizen Smith, starring Robert Lindsay, in the 1970s.

They went on to develop Only Fools And Horses, drawing inspiration from their childhoods in London, and pitched it to bosses at the Bbc, who immediately picked it up for a season in 1981.

Butt was also instrumental in casting Sir David Jason as the show's lead, Derek 'Del Boy' Trotter, and went on to direct and executive produce the series until 1987. The show ran until 2003.

He also worked with Sullivan again on Just Good Friends, as well as directing episodes of popular British comedies Last of the Summer Wine and Are You Being Served?

Butt is survived by his partner Jo Blyth and a daughter.

Sullivan passed away in April, 2011.