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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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Gerald Alexander Anderson (1929–2012) by Dave Finchett, 2001 © Anderson Entertainment 2001 and 2015

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Anderson, Gerald Alexander [Gerry] (1929–2012), television producer, writer, and director, was born Gerald Alexander Abrahams on 14 April 1929 at the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital, London, the second son of Joseph Abrahams, commercial clerk, the son of east European Jewish immigrants, and his wife, ...

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See Fletcher, Cyril Trevellian

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Ronald William George Barker (1929–2005) by unknown photographer, 1975 Getty Images

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Barker, Ronald William George [Ronnie] (1929–2005), actor and comedian, was born on 25 September 1929 at 70 Garfield Street, Bedford, the only son and second of the three children of Leonard William Barker, a clerk for Shell, and his wife, Edith Eleanor, née...

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Baron, (Joseph) Alexander (1917–1999), novelist and screenwriter, was born Joseph Alexander Bernstein on 4 December 1917 at 30 Penyston Road, Maidenhead, Berkshire, the son of Barnet Bernstein, later Baron (1894–1977), a Polish-born furrier, and his wife, Fanny, née Levinson (1895–1973). Once settled in ...

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Robert Oxton Bolt (1924–1995) by Stephen Hyde, 1985 © Stephen Hyde; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bolt, Robert Oxton [Bob] (1924–1995), scriptwriter and playwright, was born on 15 August 1924 at Sale, Manchester, Lancashire, the second of the two children of Ralph Bolt and Leah Binyon. Ralph ran a glassware and furniture shop, and Leah, a socialist feminist, was a teacher. Theirs was a northern Methodist household, guided by a firm moral code but enlivened by the vigorous argument of nonconformist politics....

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Boyd, Edward [Eddie] (1916–1989), playwright and scriptwriter, was born on 11 May 1916 at 5 Townhead Street, Stevenston, Ayrshire, probably the eldest of four children known to have been born to Samuel Joseph Boyd, dynamite worker (whose father, Edward, was from co. Antrim, Ireland...

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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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Cooper, Giles Stannus (1918–1966), playwright, was born on 9 August 1918 in Carrickmines, Dublin, the elder child and only son of Guy Cooper (1889–1941), naval officer and colonial civil servant, and his wife, Winifred, née Warren (1888–1977), a talented painter who had studied at the ...

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Croft, David [real name David John Sharland] (1922–2011), comedy writer, director, and producer, was born on 7 September 1922 at Sharcroft, Panorama Road, Sandbanks, near Poole, Dorset, the younger son of Reginald Hanson Sharland (1886–1944), actor, and his wife, Annie Harland, née...

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David Croft (1922–2011) by David Thorpe, 1971 © David Thorpe / Associated Newspapers / Rex Features

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Delaney, Shelagh (1938–2011), dramatist and screenwriter, was born on 25 November 1938 in the Hope Hospital, Salford, the elder child of Joseph Delaney, bus conductor, and his wife, Elsie, née Twemlow. At the time of her birth registration her parents lived at 67 New Thomas Street, Pendleton, Salford...

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Shelagh Delaney (1938–2011) by Ida Kar, 1958 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Elliot, John Herbert (1918–1997), television scriptwriter and producer, was born on 4 July 1918 at 122 Castle Hill, Reading, the son of Herbert Benbow Elliot (1890–1965), then serving as a captain in the eleventh battalion of the tank corps, later a businessman, and his wife, ...

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Martin Alan Feldman (1934–1982) by Terry O'Neill, 1974 [on the set of the film Young Frankenstein] © Terry O'Neill; collection National Portrait Gallery, London