Guinness World Records is sad to hear of the passing of the broadcaster Sir David Frost, who died of a heart attack on Saturday at the age of 74.

Sir David played an important role in popularising Guinness World Records on television, as both a producer and host of the shows.

In 1973, he acquired TV broadcasting rights and produced record-breaking spectaculars such as David Frost Presents the Guinness Book of World Records and David Frost Presents: The Guinness Book of World Records for ABC TV in the USA, and The Guinness Book of Records Hall of Fame special for the BBC.

Sir David interviews Sir Paul McCartney alongside Norris McWhirter in 1986 for BBC TV special The Guinness Book of Records Hall of Fame

Among those interviewed by Sir David were Roy C Sullivan, who at that stage had been hit five times by lightning (and would go on to suffer two more strikes); Don Koehler, the world's tallest man; Henri La Mothe, the highest shallow-diver; and stunt cyclist Evel Knievel.

Renowned as an international jet-setter, Sir David always claimed that he should have had a world record of his own for the most supersonic flights, having flown between London and New York on Concorde "about 1,000 times".


Sir David with Don Koehler, the former holder of the world's tallest living man title

It was never officially ratified – he had taken so many flights, he'd lost count – but in his own estimation he'd travelled more than 5 million miles on Concorde.

Later in his career, he became a household name for his incisive interviews. As noted by The Times, he is the only person to have interviewed the last seven Presidents of the USA and the last seven Prime Ministers of the UK.

And his face-off with disgraced US President Richard Nixon has become legendary, becoming the subject of the stage play and movie Frost/Nixon – in which Sir David (played on stage and screen by Michael Sheen) can be seen hosting a Guinness World Records TV Special.

"People of a certain age will always associate Sir David with record breaking," said Guinness World Records Editor-in-Chief Craig Glenday. "Along with Founding Editors Norris and Ross McWhirter, David was one of the first faces of Guinness World Records for us young fans in the 1970s and 80s. And although he went on to become most famous for his trial-by-television interviews, he will always be remembered by me for introducing some of the world's most remarkable record breakers."