11 pictures of Tony Benn looking awesome smoking a pipe

Instantly recognisable, Benn was rarlely seen in public without his pipe, even well into his 80s  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Instantly recognisable, Benn was rarlely seen in public without his pipe, even well into his 80s (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

2005 Getty Images

Politician, activist, tea drinker, pipe smoker and left-wing hero Tony Benn has died aged 88.

One of the country's most famous and long-running pipe smokers, Tony Benn was voted 'Pipe Smoker of the Year' in 1992 by the British Pipesmokers' Council  (Photo by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images)One of the country's most famous and long-running pipe smokers, Tony Benn was voted 'Pipe Smoker of the Year' in 1992 by the British Pipesmokers' Council (Photo by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images)

To pay tribute to the man called an ‘iconic figure of our age’ and ‘a champion of the powerless’ by Labour leader Ed Miliband, here are 11 pictures of the man originally born ‘Sir Anthony Wedgwood Benn, 2nd Viscount Stansgate’, indulging in one of his most famous passions.

GALLERY: Tony Benn - Pipe smoker

Obviously, smoking is very bad for you, and we cannot strongly recommend enough you do not take up pipe smoking yourself.

But after seeing how glorious Tony looked over the years, you may find it hard to resist.

Tony Benn developed a close friendship later on in his life with TV presenter Natasha Kaplinksy (Photo by Electric Cinema via Getty Images)Tony Benn developed a close friendship later on in his life with TV presenter Natasha Kaplinksy (Photo by Electric Cinema via Getty Images)

The 13 best Tony Benn quotes

Other fun facts about Benn - he drank a colossal amount of tea, was obsessed with a Chicago Town Pizza, and was close friends with Natasha Kaplinksy.

After gulping down brews from massive mugs for years, claiming he drank one pint of tea every hour, he once worked out on a train journey that during his life he had drunk enough tea to float the QE2.

But he had another passion: The Chicago Town Deep Dish Triple Cheese Pizza.

Benn was so attached to this delicacy he was positively distraught when he went shopping one day to find the item had disappeared from his local supermarket.

“I went in search of them because I have eaten two of them every day for years,” he said.

He became friends with TV presenter Natasha Kaplinsky while well into his 80s, after she interviewed him for a BBC programme Heaven And Earth.

Two days later, she arrived at his doorstep with a box of chocolates, an action he described as ‘really sweet’.

The following month, they had lunch together at the House of Commons, and continued to be close in the years since, with Benn once writing a tongue in cheek letter to the Daily Telegraph, angry it had called theirs a ‘platonic friendship’ after printing a picture of them together.

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