Beloved former Australian prime minister Bob Hawke has died aged 89. The legendary Labor leader, famously known for tossing back a couple of beers at the cricket, passed away peacefully at his home in Sydney.

His wife, Blanche d’Alpuget, shared the news in a statement on behalf of the family.

“Today we lost Bob Hawke, a great Australian – many would say the greatest Australian of the post-war era.

“He died peacefully at home at the age of 89 years. 

“I and Bob’s children, Sue, Stephen, Rosslyn and stepson, Louis, and his grandchildren, will hold a private funeral.”

A memorial service will be held in Sydney in the coming weeks.

Among his proudest achievements were large increases in the proportion of children finishing high school, his role in ending apartheid in South Africa, and his successful international campaign to protect Antarctica from mining.

He abhorred racism and bigotry. His father, the Reverend Clem Hawke, told Bob that if you believed in the Fatherhood of God then you must also believe in the Brotherhood of Man. Bob would add today the Sisterhood of Women.

Bob was dearly loved by his family, and so many friends and colleagues. We will miss him.

The golden bowl is broken.

Image: AAP