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Shake n' Vac jingle maker Jonathan Hodge, from Folkestone, dies aged 78

A composer who wrote more than 2,000 jingles for TV and radio - including the famous Shake n' Vac tune - has died.

Tributes have been paid to "funny and caring" Jonathan Hodge, from Folkestone, following his death aged 78.

He died on Sunday, July 7 at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford from multiple organ failure.

Composer Jonathan Hodge, from Folkestone, has died aged 78
Composer Jonathan Hodge, from Folkestone, has died aged 78

Mr Hodge, originally from London, had a very colourful career writing catchy music for many well-known adverts, including the campaigns for A Mars A Day, Birds Eye Potato Waffles, Topic and Lip Smackin Pepsi Cola.

He was also behind the Shake n' Vac jingle, for which the main lyric is "do the Shake n' Vac, and put the freshness back", which is often included in lists of the best jingles of all time.

Mr Hodge, a father-of-three, also wrote pop music and had a No.3 hit in 1978 with If I Had Words, sung by Scott Fitzgerald and Yvonne Keeley.

The song sold millions worldwide, was used in the film Babe (1995) and was later covered by Westlife.

Mr Hodge composed many well known jingles, including one for the Shake n' Vac advert
Mr Hodge composed many well known jingles, including one for the Shake n' Vac advert

He also wrote the scores for GREAT (1975), an Oscar-winning animated musical documentary about engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel, and Villain (1971), featuring Richard Burton.

Mr Hodge wrote and produced Fiddley Foodle Bird (1991), a children’s animated series for the BBC narrated by Bruce Forsyth, and also worked on Henry's Cat (1983) and Cold Justice (1983).

His daughter Tilly, who lives in Essex, said: "I feel very proud of my dad - people might not know his name but they will know his work, know his jingles.

"He was an eccentric character. A very bright personality, flamboyant with a great sense of humour.

"He was very caring and very funny."

Mr Hodge was born in London in 1941 and had offices for many years in Wardour Street, in the heart of the city’s advertising and film industry.

He was married twice - once to Debbie Raymond, daughter of publisher Paul Raymond, who launched several titles including soft porn magazine Men Only, and ran several clubs.

In the The Look of Love (2013), a movie based on the life of Mr Raymond, Mr Hodge, as his son in law, was portrayed by Simon Bird, of Inbetweeners' fame.

Mr Hodge, along with his partner at the time Nicki, moved to Bilsington near Ashford in 1985 and set up at studio at home.

He then moved to Folkestone in 2004, and had homes along The Leas and in Godwyn Gardens. For a time he coached at Folkestone Rugby Club, where his son went.

Mr Hodge had three children - Damian, who has since died, and Tim, 29, and Tilly, 26, plus three grand children.

Since 2014 he suffered with dementia and lived in both Whitfield Residential Home, near Dover, and Saltwood Care Home, in Hythe.

His funeral will be held on Tuesdayat Hawkinge Crematorium, in Aerodrome Road, at 1.30pm. Anyone who knew Mr Hodge is welcome to attend.

Enquiries can be directed through Chittenden's Funeral Service in Hythe.

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