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On This Day (USA) - 31 August



The Dominators: Episode 4 premiered on BBC One in 1968 at 5:14pm, watched by 7.50 million viewers.

Jamie and Cully fight back against the Quarks but Dominator Toba threatens the lives of his prisoners if they do not identify the culprits.


 Birthdays
Holly Earl will be 27 - 2 credits, including Lily Arwell in The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe

Holly Earl is an English actress. She is best known for her role as Elena on ITV's Benidorm and Nita Clements in the BBC medical drama Casualty.

Career

Earl made her television debut at the age of four, playing Robson Green's daughter in Touching Evil. She then appeared in the BBC Christmas special The Greatest Store in the World (1999). This was followed by her first film role as May Bailey in Possession (2002). She appeared in the popular shows Doctor Who, Skins, and Cuckoo. In 2012, she made her stage debut as Bertha in The Father at the Belgrade Theatre. She later received an Ian Charleson Award nomination for her role.

Personal life

Earl attended Drayton Manor High School. She also has an older sister Elizabeth who's also an actress.

Biography from the wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA



Leo Bill will be 39 - credited as Pilot in A Christmas Carol

Leo Bill is an English actor, best known for his role as James Brocklebank in the 2006 film The Living and the Dead. He is son of the actress Sheila Kelley.

Theatre

In 2010 he gave a very well received performance when he appeared in Posh by Laura Wade at the Royal Court Theatre in London as Alistair Ryle. In 2011, he played the lovable libertine Charles Surface in Richard Brinsley Sheridan's The School for Scandal at the Barbican, London. Directed by Deborah Warner, the production received mixed reviews. Currently, beginning on August 5th, 2015, he plays Horatio in 'Hamlet' at the Barbican, London. He was cast beside Benedict Cumberbatch, who plays the title role.

Biography from the wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA



Peter Childs (died 1989 aged 50) would be 80 - credited as Jack Ward in The Mark of the Rani

Peter Childs was a British character actor who shot to fame playing Cockney Detective Sergeant Ronnie Rycott, nemesis of Arthur Daley in the top rated ITV series, Minder.

Childs was born at Eastbourne on 31 August 1939, and educated at the local grammar school before training to be an actor. He trained at the Birmingham Theatre School, toiling 10 years doing repertory work before breaking into television, playing a small role in the Anton Rodgers crime series, 'Zodiac'. Later Childs gained valuable experience working with the Manchester 59 company, appearing in Erb, a show which transferred to the West End. He also played a comical undertaker in Joe Orton's Loot to great effect.

A regular performer at the Theatre Royal in London's Stratford East, Childs gave an outstanding performance in Joan Littlewood's last performance there, So You Want to Be in Pictures. During this time he showed considerable gifts for comedy and improvisation. Childs also appeared in the Royal Court (and later in the West End) in David Storey's play The Changing Room, which was directed by Lindsay Anderson, who also cast him in the film, O Lucky Man.

On television, Child's familiar features were seen in The Sweeney, The Onedin Line, Rumpole of the Bailey, Bergerac, Juliet Bravo and Ever Decreasing Circles. He had also appeared in a host of other dramas including two separate appearances in Granada TV's popular soap opera, Coronation Street. Childs had made his name on television a number of years earlier, as Detective Ron Gash in the final series of Public Eye, transmitted in 1975. The following year he was cast as Det. Sgt Donald Grant in the final series of the long running BBC Police series, Softly, Softly: Taskforce. But it was the programme 'Minder' that made Childs a household name in Great Britain. In the hugely popular series, his character had a burning desire to see Arthur Daley, played by George Cole, behind bars.

His other movie appearances include Sweeney!, Ellis Island, If You Go Down in the Woods Today, An Officer and a Car Salesman and most memorably Minder on the Orient Express, where he reprised his role as Ronnie Rycott.

In his personal life Childs was a fervent fan of racecourses and greyhound stadiums.

He died of leukaemia in 1989 at the age of 50.

Biography from the wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA



Roy Castle (died 1994 aged 62) would be 87 - credited as Ian in Dr Who and the Daleks(Aaru)

Roy Castle, OBE, was an English dancer, singer, comedian, actor, television presenter and musician. In addition to being a talented jazz trumpet player, he could play many other instruments.

Early career

Castle was born in Scholes, near Holmfirth, West Riding of Yorkshire. The son of a railwayman, he was a tap dancer from an early age and trained at Nora Bray's school of dance with Audrey Spencer who later turned out to have a big dance school, and after leaving Holme Valley Grammar School (now Honley High School) he started his career as an entertainer in an amateur concert party. As a young performer in the 1950s, he lived in Cleveleys near Blackpool and appeared there at the local Queen's Theatre, turning professional in 1953 as a stooge for Jimmy Clitheroe and Jimmy James. By 1958 he was appearing at the Royal Variety Show. As a singer, he released one charting single in 1960, the Christmas song "Little White Berry".

Television career

In the mid-1960s he starred in the BBC television show The Roy Castle Show. In 1965, he appeared in the film Dr. Who and the Daleks, playing the role of Dr. Who's first male assistant, Ian Chesterton, quite differently from the way it had been played in the original television series by William Russell. He also appeared in Dr. Terror's House of Horrors as a jazz musician suffering a curse after copying voodoo tunes. He also appeared in Carry On... Up the Khyber in 1968, and in the TV musical Pickwick for the BBC in 1969. In 1973, Castle teamed up with the actor and comedian Ronnie Barker in the original one-off called "Another Fine Mess" (an episode from a series called Seven of One). Barker was one of Castle's best friends, and paid tribute to their work together shortly after Castle's death.

Between 1967 and 1968 Castle co-starred with Jimmy Edwards in the London West End run of the comedy farce show Big Bad Mouse when Eric Sykes had to withdraw because of illness. The show was resident at the Shaftesbury Theatre and, while being loosely scripted, it offered both Edwards and Castle the chance to freely ad-lib and generally break the fourth wall with the audience, Castle breaking into trumpet performances while Edwards walked into a front stall seat to read a newspaper, tap dancing and firing ping-pong balls into the stalls. He also once stood in for Bruce Forsyth hosting The Generation Game in 1975 while Forsyth was ill.

Record Breakers

In 1972, he first presented Record Breakers, a children's show, and he remained host for over 20 years. He recorded the theme song for the show himself. While presenting the show he broke nine world records himself, including

  • Fastest tap-dance 1,440 taps per minute – 24 taps per second, set on 14 January 1973, a record that has never been bettered.
  • Longest wing walk – 3 hours, 23 minutes.
  • Playing the same tune on 43 different instruments in four minutes.

He was a host of the show up until a few months before his death in 1994, alongside Norris and Ross McWhirter, Fiona Kennedy and Cheryl Baker. From then on, hosting was taken over by Baker and former athlete Kriss Akabusi. It continued for 29 years until 2001, one of Britain's longest-running shows.

Singing career

Between 1958 and 1969, Castle recorded numerous singles and three LPs. Only one of these LPs has seen a CD release so far: Songs For A Rainy Day was recorded in 1966 for Columbia (now reissued in the UK on CD by EMI Gold, re-titled Isn't This A Lovely Day). The record features twelve songs with rain as the theme. It is notable that some of the top British jazz players of the day such as Gordon Beck (piano), Jeff Clyne (bass), Leon Calvert (flugelhorn), Ike Isaacs (guitar), Ray Swinfield (flute) and Al Newman (saxophone) played on the record. The LP features jazz arrangements by Victor Graham and covers a variety of styles such as big band rompers ("Pennies From Heaven", "Stormy Weather"), ballads ("February Brings The Rain", "Here's That Rainy Day", "Soon It's Gonna Rain"),and bossa novas ("Everytime It Rains", "The Gentle Rain").

Personal life

He was married to the dancer Fiona Dickson in 1963 after they were introduced to each other by Eric Morecambe. They had four children. Their youngest son, Ben Castle (born 1973), is a jazz saxophonist who has played with Jamie Cullum, Carleen Anderson and Beth Rowley, among many others. Both Castle and his wife were committed Christians and they regularly attended the Baptist church near their home.

Castle was also a keen football fan and supported Liverpool Football Club. Less than six months before his death, he attended the Liverpool-Everton derby match at Anfield on 14 March 1994 and stood on the famous Spion Kop terrace, as it was the last local derby that would be staged before the Kop was demolished to make way for a new all-seater stand. He had also been in the crowd at Liverpool's FA Cup final victory over Sunderland in May 1992, shortly after he was first found to have cancer. At that time Ronnie Barker paid tribute to him, referring to their portrayal of characters that bore a strong resemblance to Laurel and Hardy in Another Fine Mess.

On 31 December 1992, Castle became an OBE. He was also a recipient of the Carl Alan Award, an honour voted for by members of the professional dance industry.

Illness and death

Castle was found to have lung cancer in January 1992. He was predicted to live only another 6 months. He underwent chemotherapy and radiotherapy and went into remission later that year. A non-smoker, he blamed his illness on passive smoking during his years of playing the trumpet in smoky jazz clubs. On 26 November 1993, Castle announced that his illness had returned, and once again underwent treatment in the hope of overcoming it. Several months later, he carried out the high profile Tour of Hope to raise funds for the erection of the building that would become the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, which was – and still is – the only British charity dedicated entirely to defeating lung cancer. By this stage, however, his condition was deteriorating and recovery was looking highly unlikely.

During and shortly after Castle's illness, many smoke-free restaurants and cafes were awarded the Roy Castle Clean Air Award to denote their adherence to a (then voluntary) smoke-free regime. The award, although now defunct given the advent of smoking bans, remains a matter of pride for various establishments, and many such venues continue to boast of the award.

His final contribution to Record Breakers was aired at the end of the series ending in December 1993, although the programme continued until 2001.

He died in Buckinghamshire on 2 September 1994, two days after his 62nd birthday.

His widow Fiona worked with the charity for many years after her husband's death, and was a key figure in campaigning for the British smoking ban which came into effect in 2006 and 2007, and has seen smoking banned in virtually all enclosed public places.

Roy remains a notable figure in popular culture in the UK, partially because of the cult status of his work on Record Breakers. He is, for example, immortalised by the naming of the Roy Castle award for debate at Dollar Academy. A new development in Port Glasgow will also feature a street named Roy Castle Avenue.

Biography from the wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA



Jodie Wilson will be 55 - credited as Vocalist in Delta and the Bannermen

Singer who appeared in the 1987 story Delta and the Bannermen

Daughter of Dolore Whiteman and wife of the singer Des O'Connor



Dennis Tate (died 1993 aged 61) would be 88 - credited as Technix Engineer / Pilot in The Daleks' Master Plan

Born in Iowa, USA, Tate mainly worked there, appearing in films such as Shaft, and No Place to Hide, and also appeared in Benson. He died in Los Angeles.



George Sewell (died 2007 aged 82) would be 95 - credited as Ratcliffe in Remembrance of the Daleks

George Sewell  was an English actor.

The son of a Hoxton printer and a florist; Sewell left school at age 14 and worked briefly in the printing trade before switching to building work, specifically the repair of bomb-damaged houses. He then trained as a Royal Air Force pilot, though too late to see action during World War II.

After his demobilisation, Sewell joined the Merchant Navy, serving as a steward for the Cunard Line, on the RMS Queen Mary and RMS Queen Elizabeth on their Atlantic crossings to New York. He worked as a street photographer, assisted a French roller-skating team and was drummer and assistant road manager of a rumba band. He also travelled Europe as a motor coach courier travelling around Europe for a holiday company.

Ages 35 Sewell auditioned for a production by Joan Littlewood's Theatre Workshop of Fings Ain't Wot They Used T'Be. He went on to star in two other Littlewood productions, Sparrers Can't Sing (1962) and as Field Marshal Haig in Oh! What a Lovely War (1963) which later went to Paris and Broadway. The experience garnered from stage acting led to a long career in both film and television.

For many years Sewell was the gritty face of crime and law enforcement in a huge array of television series. Amongst his early roles, he was the tallyman in Ken Loach's TV play Up The Junction (1965), a criminal who runs off with a teenage girl in Softly, Softly (1966), a hard-nosed building engineer in The Power Game (1965–66), a cowardly informer in Man in a Suitcase (1967), and a seedy private eye in Spindoe (1968). In 1970 he played Colonel Alec Freeman in the first series of Gerry Anderson's live-action science-fiction drama UFO.

In 1973, Euston Films reinvigorated the TV series Special Branch, formerly a videotaped series starring Derren Nesbitt. Sewell was brought in to play the defining character of DCI Alan Craven. The show ran for two seasons with Sewell, and is very fondly remembered - not least as a stylistic forerunner of crime drama The Sweeney (in which Sewell also appeared - as a villain). Later Sewell was to parody this role as Supt Frank Cottam in the Jasper Carrott/Robert Powell comedy, The Detectives.

Later television appearances include Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (1979), in which he played Mendel, and the Doctor Who story Remembrance of the Daleks, (1988), in which he played a fascist called Mr Ratcliffe. He also appeared frequently in cinema films, notably This Sporting Life (1963), Poor Cow (1967) and Get Carter (1971).


 Deaths
Sheila Fay (died 2013 aged 87) - credited as Meg in The Time Warrior

Sheila Fay played the serving wench and kitchen boss Meg in the The Time Warrior.

Also worked on BreadHelp!Strike It Rich!Hallelujah!In Loving MemorySweet SixteenOne SummerYes MinisterTogetherThe Mill on the FlossCentre PlayMurder Most English: A Flaxborough ChronicleZ CarsThe WackersThe PallisersThe Liver BirdsThe Unpleasantness at the Bellona ClubA Christmas Night with the StarsFollyfootCallanWives and DaughtersJude the ObscureA Handful of ThievesThe ChaseSix.

Fay was married to the actor Ken Jones until her death. Her date of birth is unknown, but it is believed she was born in 1926.



Michael Sheard (died 2005 aged 67) - 7 credits, including Dr. Summers in The Mind of Evil

Michael Sheard was a Scottish actor who featured in a large number of films and television programmes and appeared in 17 episodes of Doctor Who.

His most prominent television role was as strict deputy headmaster Maurice Bronson in the British children's series Grange Hill which he played from 1985-89 

Sheard was born in Aberdeen, Scotland, the son of a church minister, and was trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. During his National Service, Sheard was a Royal Air Force aircraftman.

Sheard is most known for playing villains. His most prominent film role was that of Admiral Ozzel in The Empire Strikes Back (1980).

In addition to his Star Wars role, Sheard had a lengthy affiliation with science fiction and appeared in six different Doctor Who stories, opposite the First, Third, Fourth, Fifth and Seventh Doctors. He also worked with Eighth Doctor Paul McGann in The Stones of Venice, a Doctor Who audio drama produced by Big Finish Productions. He was a regular guest at both Doctor Who and Star Wars conventions over the years in the UK and the US.

Further to this, he had guest roles in Colditz (1972), On The Buses (1973), Space: 1999 (1975), The Tomorrow People (1978), and Blake's 7 (1980).

Sheard portrayed Adolf Hitler five times throughout his career, including in The Tomorrow People (1978),  Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), and Rogue Male (1976). He has also portrayed Heinrich Himmler three times. In 1983, he played Herr Grunwald, the German manager of a building site, in the first series of Auf Wiedersehen, Pet.

In 1980, he had a major supporting role in Stephen Poliakoff's acclaimed BBC television play Caught on a Train.

In February 2005 Sheard played a small cameo role as the narrator in Star Wars fan film Order of the Sith: Vengeance and its sequel, Downfall - Order of the Sith, alongside Jeremy Bulloch and Dave Prowse. These fan films were made in England in support of Save the Children.



Gerry Davis (died 1991 aged 61) - 31 credits, including Script Editor for The Tenth Planet

Gerry Davis was a British television writer, best known for his contributions to the science-fiction genre. 

From 1966 until the following year, he was the script editor on Doctor Who, for which he co-created the Cybermen. His fellow co-creator of these creatures was the programme's unofficial scientific adviser Dr. Kit Pedler, and following their work on Doctor Who, the pair teamed up again in 1970 when they created a science-fiction programme of their own, DoomwatchDoomwatch ran for three seasons on BBC One from 1970 to 1972, and also spawned a novel written by Davis and Pedler, and later a cinema film and a 1999 revival on Channel 5.

Davis briefly returned to writing Doctor Who, penning the original script for Revenge of the Cybermen, in 1975, though the transmitted version was heavily rewritten by the then script-editor Robert Holmes. He also adapted several of his scripts into novelisations for Target Books. With Kit Pedler, he wrote the science-fiction novels Mutant 59: The Plastic Eaters (1971), Brainrack (1974) and The Dynostar Menace (1975).

In the 1980s Davis worked in America both in television and on feature films such as The Final Countdown (1980). In late 1989 he and Terry Nation made a joint but unsuccessful bid to take over production of Doctor Who and reformat the series mainly for the American market. He also wrote for the soap operas Coronation Street and United!.

Biography from the Wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA