Best remembered for his work during the 1980s on the sketch comedy series
Born George Ian Kenneth Ireland, he grew up in Paisley, Scotland. From 1993 until 2003, he served as Artistic Director of Scotland's Royal Lyceum Theatre (in Edinburgh).
He directed stage productions of several classic plays and musicals, including Macbeth, A View from the Bridge, and Guys and Dolls.
His first marriage, to Marilyn Imrie, ended in divorce. He wed Meg Poole in 1980; the union lasted until his death in 2014 from brain cancer.
He and Jake Canuso were both series regulars on Benidorm.