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Bernard Cribbins
Born 29 December 1928 (1928-12-29) (age 81)
Oldham, Lancashire, England
Occupation character actor, musical comedian
Spouse(s) Gillian Cribbins (present)

Bernard Cribbins (born 29 December 1928) is an English character actor and musical comedian who has performed in numerous films and television shows.



Born in Derker, Oldham, Lancashire, Cribbins served an apprenticeship at the Oldham Repertory Theatre, taking a break during his years of study to undertake National Service with the Parachute Regiment in his late teens.[1]

Cribbins made his first West End theatre appearance in 1956 at the Arts Theatre playing the two Dromios in A Comedy of Errors and co-starred in the first West End productions of Not Now Darling, There Goes the Bride and Run For Your Wife. He also starred in the revue An Another Thing, and recorded a single of a song from the show entitled "Folksong". In 1962 he recorded two highly popular and well-remembered comic songs, "Right Said Fred" (in which a group of workmen struggle to relocate a large unspecified object, possibly a piano) and "Hole in the Ground" (in which an embittered workman murders a bowler-hatted harasser).[1]

Cribbins appeared in films from the early 1950s, his credits include three Carry On films, the second Doctor Who film Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150 AD, and as the station porter, Perks, in The Railway Children (1970). He was the narrator of the British animated children's TV series The Wombles. He also narrated a celebrated BBC radio adaptation of The Wind in the Willows and provided the voice of the Tufty character in RoSPA road safety films in the 1960s. He was the reader in more episodes of Jackanory than any other person, with a total of 114 appearances. Other television appearances included Fawlty Towers, as the spoon salesman Mr. Hutchinson (mistaken by Basil Fawlty for a hotel inspector) in the episode "The Hotel Inspectors" (1975). He also provided the voice of Buzby, a talking cartoon bird that served as the mascot for the then Post Office,[2] He also appeared reduced to OO gauge in adverts for Hornby model trains.[3]

In 2003 he played Wally Bannister in the long running soap Coronation Street. He is also the narrator of The Way We Were, a 2008 series broadcast on ITV.

In January 2007 he guest starred as glam rock promoter Arnold Korns in the Doctor Who radio play Horror of Glam Rock for BBC Radio 7. In December he appeared as Wilfred Mott in the Doctor Who Christmas television special, "Voyage of the Damned"; he then reappeared as the same character throughout the 2008 series, as the grandfather of companion Donna Noble[4] He also appeared in the "The End of Time", the 2-part Christmas 2009 special that saw the end of David Tennant in the role of the Doctor.

Right Said Fred campaign (2010)

An online campaign started at the beginning of 2010 to get Bernard Cribbin's top ten hit, "Right Said Fred" back in the charts. It was to get as many people as possible to buy "Right Said Fred" from 7th - 13th March.

The campaign was similar to that of the Girls Aloud's to get Untouchable into the top ten.


Robert Ross praised him as Midshipman Albert Poop-Decker in Carry On Jack, describing his bemused cheerfulness and comic ineptitude as a stunning debut performance.[5]


Year Title Episodes
1966 The Avengers "The Girl from Auntie"
1966–1995 Jackanory
1968 The Avengers "Look - (Stop Me If You've Heard This One) But There Were These Two Fellers..."
1971, 1976 Get the Drift
1973 The Wombles (voices)
1973 The Great Big Groovy Horse
1975 Fawlty Towers "The Hotel Inspectors"
1976 Simon in the Land of Chalk Drawings (Narrator)
1976-78 Star Turn
1976 Space: 1999 "Brian the Brain"
1979 Worzel Gummidge
1981 Shillingbury Tales
1982 The Good Old Day
1983 Cuffy
1983 Moschops
1986 Langley Bottom
1987 When We Are Married
1987 High and Dry
1993 A Passion For Angling
1999 Dalziel and Pascoe "Time to Go"
2000 The Canterbury Tales "The Journey Back"
2003 Last of the Summer Wine "In Which Gavin Hinchcliffe Loses the Gulf Stream"
2003 Coronation Street Wally Bannister (Character played)
2005 Down to Earth "Hot Air"

"Tall Tales"

2007-10 Doctor Who "Voyage of the Damned"

"Partners in Crime"
"The Sontaran Stratagem"
"The Poison Sky"
"Turn Left"
"The Stolen Earth"
"Journey's End"
The End of Time

2009 Never Mind The Buzzcocks


Year Film
1957 Yangtse Incident: The Story of HMS Amethyst
1959 Tommy the Toreador
1960 Two-Way Stretch
1960 The World of Suzie Wong
1962 The Wrong Arm of the Law
1962 The Mouse on the Moon
1963 Crooks in Cloisters
1963 Carry On Jack
1964 Carry On Spying
1964 A Home of Your Own
1964 Allez France
1965 She
1966 Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150 AD
1967 Casino Royale
1968 Don't Raise the Bridge, Lower the River
1970 The Railway Children
1972 Frenzy
1978 The Water Babies
1981 Dangerous Davies - The Last Detective
1992 Carry On Columbus
2003 Blackball

UK chart singles

Year Single UK Chart Position Notes
1962 "Hole In The Ground" #9
1962 "Right Said Fred" #10 Inspired the name of the band "Right Said Fred"
1962 "Gossip Calypso" #25


Year Album Notes
1962 A Combination Of Cribbins
1983 The Snowman (Narrator)
2005 The Very Best of Bernard Cribbins


  1. ^ a b "Bernard Cribbins". Gavin Barker Associates. Retrieved 2008-04-05. 
  2. ^ which later became British Telecommunications when the two wings of the Post Office were demerged.
  3. ^ screenonline: Cribbins, Bernard (1928-) Biography
  4. ^ "Into the Future!", Doctor Who Magazine: 4, 19 September 2007 
  5. ^ Robert Ross, The Carry on Companion, 

External links



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