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(Wilfred) Robert Adams (c. 1900–1965) by Frank Lilley, 1949 Getty Images – Frank Lilley

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Adams, (Wilfred) Robert (c. 1900–1965), actor, was born in Georgetown, British Guiana, the son of Robert Adams, boat builder. He was educated at St Stephen's Scots School, later St Joseph's Intermediate. In 1920 he won a government scholarship to be trained as a teacher at ...

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Adrian, Max [real name Max Bor] (1903–1973), actor, was born on 1 November 1903 in northern Ireland, the son of Edward Norman Cavendish Bor and his wife, Mabel Lloyd, née Thornton. He was educated at Portora Royal School, Enniskillen, renowned for its teaching of English, whose past pupils included ...

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Aherne, (William) Brian de Lacy (1902–1986), actor, was born on 2 May 1902 at The Pleasaunce, King's Norton, Worcestershire, the son of William Lacy Ahern (1867–1945) (who later amended his name to Willoughby de Lacy Aherne), architect, and his wife, Annie ...

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Allen, William Ernest (Chesney) (1894–1982), comedian and singer, was born at 7 Hamballa Road, Battersea, London, on 5 April 1894, the son of Edwin Allen, a prosperous builder, and his wife, Louisa, née Cridland. Allen's first employment on leaving school was as a solicitor's clerk. In 1912, at the age of eighteen, he made his début as an actor in repertory at the ...

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See Jackson, Gordon Cameron

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Andrews, Henry Stewart Fleetwood [Harry] (1910–1989), actor, was born on 10 November 1910 at St Mary's, Pembury Road, Tonbridge, Kent, the son of Scottish doctor Henry Arthur Andrews and his wife, Amy Diana Frances Horner. He was educated at Tonbridge School and at ...

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Dame Edith Margaret Emily Ashcroft (1907–1991) by Jorge Lewinski, 1968 [with Variation on Peggy by Walter Sickert, 1934–5] © Jorge Lewinski; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Ashcroft, Dame Edith Margaret Emily [Peggy] (1907–1991), actress, was born on 22 December 1907 in Croydon, Surrey, the second of two children of William Worsley Ashcroft (1878–1918), a land agent, and his wife, Violetta Maud, née Bernheim (1874–1926), a keen amateur actress of Danish and German-Jewish descent. Known from childhood as ...

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Askey, Arthur Bowden (1900–1982), actor and entertainer, was born on 6 June 1900 at 29 Moses Street, Liverpool, the elder child and only son of Samuel Askey (d. 1958), secretary of the firm Sugar Products of Liverpool, and his wife, Betsy Bowden (...

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Arthur Bowden Askey (1900–1982) by Anthony Buckley, 1939 © Kenneth Hughes / National Portrait Gallery, London

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Attenborough, Richard Samuel, Baron Attenborough (1923–2014), actor, film director, and film producer, was born at 9 Brunswick Walk, Cambridge, on 29 August 1923, the eldest son of Frederick Levi Attenborough (1887–1973), historian and academic administrator, first at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and subsequently as principal of the ...

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Baddeley, Hermione Youlanda Ruby Clinton (1906–1986), actress, was born on 13 November 1906 in Broseley, Shropshire, the youngest of four daughters (there were no sons) of William Herman Clinton-Baddeley, composer and journalist, and his wife, Louise Rosalie Bourdin. A descendant both of Sir Henry Clinton (1738?–1795)...

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Hermione Youlanda Ruby Clinton Baddeley (1906–1986) by Dudley Glanfield © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Alan Fernand Badel (1923–1982) by Vivienne, 1950s © Vivienne; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Badel, Alan Fernand (1923–1982), actor and theatre producer, was born in Rusholme, Manchester, on 11 September 1923, the son of Auguste Firman Joseph Badel (1891–1962), a shipping clerk and office manager of French birth, and his wife of Huguenot descent, Elizabeth Olive Till (...

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Baker, George Morris (1931–2011), actor and author, was born on 1 April 1931 in the British embassy in Varna, Bulgaria, the second of five children of Francis Pearson (Frank) Baker (1884–1943), honorary British vice-consul, and a businessman in the import–export trade, and his wife, ...

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Baker [married name Pearson], Hylda (1905–1986), comedian, was born on 14 February 1905 at Farnworth, Bolton, Lancashire, the eldest of the seven children (three boys, four girls) of Harold (Chukky) Baker (1884–1966), comedian, and Margaret Halliwell, seamstress, both of Farnworth. She was chiefly educated at ...

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Baker, Sir (William) Stanley (1928–1976), actor and film producer, was born at 32 Albany Street in Ferndale, a village in the Rhondda valley in south Wales, on 28 February 1928, the third of the three children of John Henry Baker and his wife, ...

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Sir (William) Stanley Baker (1928–1976) by Cornel Lucas, 1955 © Cornel Lucas; collection National Portrait Gallery, London