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Adams, Douglas Noël (1952–2001), writer, was born on 11 March 1952 at the maternity hospital in Cambridge, the son of Christopher Douglas Adams (d. 1985) and his wife, Janet Dora Sydney, née Donovan.

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Douglas Noël Adams (1952–2001) by Brian Griffin, 1986 © Brian Griffin; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Allen, James John [Jim] (1926–1999), playwright and scriptwriter, was born on 7 October 1926 at 31 Higher Duke Street, Miles Platting, Manchester, the second child of John (Jack) Allen, a railway labourer, and his wife, Catherine (Kitty) Lee. The family was of Irish descent. After attending local Roman Catholic schools, ...

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Eamonn Andrews (1922–1987) by Godfrey Argent, 1970 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Andrews, Eamonn (1922–1987), radio and television broadcaster, was born on 19 December 1922 at 11 Synge Street, Dublin, Ireland, the second of five children and elder son of William Andrews, carpenter, and his wife, Margaret Farrell. He was educated at a Dublin convent and the ...

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Ashbridge, Sir Noel (1889–1975), broadcasting engineer, was born on 10 December 1889 in Wanstead, Essex, the fourth son and youngest child of John Ashbridge, solicitor, of Wanstead, and his wife, Sylvia Moore. He was educated at Forest School, Snaresbrook, Essex, and King's College, London...

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Baird, John Logie (1888–1946), television engineer, was born on 13 August 1888 at The Lodge, West Argyle Street, Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire, Scotland, the youngest of the four children of the Revd John Baird, minister of the West Parish Church, Helensburgh, and his wife, Jessie Morrison Inglis...

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John Logie Baird (1888–1946) by Howard Coster, 1935 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Barnes, Sir George Reginald (1904–1960), radio and television director and college head, was born in Byfleet, Surrey, on 13 September 1904, the son of Sir Hugh Shakespear Barnes (1853–1940), lieutenant-governor of Burma, and his second wife, Edith Helen, sister of Sir Kenneth Barnes...

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Sir George Reginald Barnes (1904–1960) by Howard Coster, 1954 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Barron, Brian Munro (1940–2009), journalist and broadcaster, was born on 28 April 1940 at Bristol Maternity Hospital, 50 Southwell Street, Clifton, Bristol, the son of Albert Barron, a clerk with an aircraft company, and his wife, Norah Bernadette, née Morgan. At the time of his birth registration his parents lived at ...

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Brian Munro Barron (1940–2009) by unknown photographer, 1980 © UPPA / Photoshot

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Baverstock, Donald Leighton (1924–1995), television producer and executive, was born on 18 January 1924 at the maternity home in Glossop Terrace, Cardiff, the only son in the family of three children of Thomas Baverstock (1896–1979), colliery clerk and later grocer, and his wife, ...

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Kingsley Amis

revised by M. Clare Loughlin-Chow

Betjeman, Sir John (1906–1984), poet, writer, and broadcaster, was born on 28 August 1906 at 52 Parliament Hill Mansions, north London, the only child of Ernest Edward Betjemann (1872–1934), a furniture manufacturer, and his wife, Mabel Bessie Dawson (1879–1952). The family name, of Dutch or German origin, can be traced back to an immigration in the late eighteenth century. The poet adopted his style of it about the age of twenty-one....

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Sir John Betjeman (1906–1984) by Sir Cecil Beaton, 1955 © Cecil Beaton Archive, Sotheby's

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Bower, Dallas Gordon (1907–1999), film, radio, and television producer and director, was born on 25 July 1907 at 34 Kensington Hall Gardens, London, the only son of Edward Lawrence Oakes Bower, East India merchant, and his first wife, (Gladys) Ethel, daughter of Eugene Dallas Marriott...

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Braybrooke, Neville Patrick Bellairs (1923–2001), writer and editor, was born at 22A Devonshire Street, London, on 30 May 1923, the only child of Patrick Philip William Braybrooke, journalist and biographer, and his first wife, Lettice Marjorie, née Bellairs (1890–1986), who had been a nurse before her marriage. His father left his mother when ...

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Bruce, George Robert (1909–2002), poet, critic, and radio and television producer, was born on 10 March 1909 at 2 Victoria Street, Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire, the first son and eldest of three children of Henry George Bruce (1872–1941), the owner of a firm of herring curers, and his wife, ...

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See Hogarth, Ann [real name Margaret Ann Gildart Jackson; married name Margaret Ann Gildart Bussell]

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Buxton, Aubrey Leland Oakes, Baron Buxton of Alsa (1918–2009), television executive and conservationist, was born at 153 Banbury Road, Oxford, on 15 July 1918, the younger son and third of four children of Leland William Wilberforce Buxton (1884–1967), army officer and farmer, and his wife, ...