Sunday, 22 November 2015

RIP Keith Michell & Peter Dimmock

Two losses to the world of entertainment this weekend; Henry VIII star Keith Michell and the first presenter of Grandstand Peter Dimmock have both died, aged 89 and 94 respectively

Australian born Michell will forever be known as the actor who brought Henry VIII to life in the classic 1970 BBC series The Six Wives of Henry VIII and its subsequent big screen remake in 1972, Henry VIII and His Six Wives - which ironically had only been repeated on TV again last weekend. He returned to the role in 1996 in The Prince of Pauper. Other roles included parts in All Night Long, The Hellfire Club and a memorable Heathcliff in a 1962 adaptation of Wuthering Heights. He was also a regular in Murder, She Wrote and was a renowned artist and singer, lending both talents to Jeremy Lloyd's Captain Beaky poems. RIP

A former RAF Flight Lieutenant, Dimmock joined the BBC after the war as head of outside broadcasts and famously oversaw the coverage of the Queen's coronation in 1953, which was the largest OB event undertaken and that time and saw more than 20 million viewers. The broadcast had the effect of doubling the number of TV owners in the UK within a year. That was the year that saw Dimmock move in front of the camera as the host of sports programmes such as Sportsview (later renamed Sportsnight) Grandstand and Sports Personality of the Year. A true pioneer of television. RIP

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