Friends of popular British astronomer and broadcaster Sir Patrick Moore say he has died at the age of 89.

A statement released on Sunday said he died at his home in the coastal town of Selsey in southern England. No specific cause of death was given, but he had suffered from heart problems.

Sir Patrick was well known for his long-running BBC television show The Sky at Night, which was credited for popularising astronomy with generations of Britons. He had presented the show for more than half a century.

The statement says he was briefly hospitalised last week when it was determined no more treatment would help him and his wish to spend his final days at home were honoured.