DoctorDoctor Who Guide

Bill Fraser

Last updated 05 March 2013


William Simpson Fraser

Born: Fri 5th June 1908
Died: Wed 9th September 1987 (age: 79)

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Bill Fraser was a Scottish actor on the British screen for many years.

He appeared in the 1980 Doctor Who story Meglos as well as the 1981 spin-off A Girl's Best Friend.

Fraser was born in Perth, Scotland and educated at Strathallan School. He began his career as a clerk in a bank before moving on to acting. In the early days when acting work was scarce, Fraser was often penniless, frequently sleeping rough on the Embankment at London. Before World War II he ran the Connaught Theatre in Worthing; when called up he served in a Royal Air Force Special Liaison Unit, reaching the rank of Flight Lieutenant, where he met and became friends with Eric Sykes. Just after the war a chance meeting in a London street led to Fraser's giving Sykes his first work as a writer for radio comedy[1] and the two friends worked together many times over the following years. Fraser is also credited with giving Peter Cushing his first acting job

Fraser often played irascible or belligerent characters on screen and had many roles as a policeman, soldier or judge. His first television appearance was on The Tony Hancock Show in 1956, after which he became a regular actor on Hancock's Half Hour. He then joined The Army Game as Sgt Claude Snudge, which led to a sequel called Bootsie and Snudge. Later comedic roles included parts in the TV dramatisation of The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13¾ and well as Ripping YarnsForeign AffairsThe Corn is Green and Father, Dear Father.

He also appeared in the comedy films The Amorous Milkman and Doctor at Large; the big-screen version ofLove Thy Neighbour; and the Frankie Howerd trilogy Up Pompeii!Up the Front and Up the Chastity Belt.

He had a recurring role on Rumpole of the Bailey as Judge Roger Bullingham, an unsympathetic judge privately nicknamed "the Mad Bull" by defence barrister Horace Rumpole.

Fraser's straight parts included Boanerges in The Apple Cart and Eddie Waters in Comedians, both for theBBC, and appearances on The Professionals and The Avengers. He also starred in the Doctor Who storyMeglos in 1980, and appeared in the spin-off show K-9 and Company the following year. In the early 80s he was in two series of a straight drama on BBC1, Flesh and Blood; his performance in its first episode of an industrialist sitting at the bedside of his dying wife was regarded by many as a tour de force.

He appeared as Mr Micawber in the TV dramatisation of David Copperfield in 1966; and his last role was as Mr Casby in the 1988 screened production of Little Dorrit.

Fraser also appeared in an early advertisement for the Austin Metro. In 1985 he was cast as Bert Baxter in The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole.

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






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