THE comedian Jimmy Tarbuck has been arrested by North Yorkshire police over an allegation of sex abuse dating back 40 years, according to reports.

North Yorkshire Police confirmed that  a 73-year-old man from Kingston-Upon-Thames had been arrested on April 26.

According to the BBC and several national newspapers the man is stand-up comic Jimmy Tarbuck.

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The arrest follows information uncovered by officers from the Metropolitan Police working on Operation Yewtree - the national police inquiry sparked by allegations of abuse against Jimmy Savile.

The complaint relates to an incident that is said to have occurred in Harrogate during the late 1970s when the alleged victim was a young boy.

The force stressed it is part of a separate investigation by the North Yorkshire Police.

Following questioning, Mr Tarbuck was released on police bail pending further enquiries. He has not been charged with any offence. 

Born in 1940, Jimmy Tarbuck is one of the elder statesmen of UK television comedy.

He went to school with John Lennon and gained his first big break with a one man show called It's Tarbuck 65! in 1964. A year later he was handed the presenting duties on London Night at the Palladium, one of the most popular shows on television at the time.

The Queen awarded him an OBE for services to showbusiness and charity in 1994. He was also a prominent supporter of the Conservative Party and once baked a birthday cake for Margaret Thatcher.
His daughter is the actress, television and radio presenter Liza Tarbuck.