Ronnie Carroll

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Ronnie Carroll at the Eurovision Song Contest 1962

Ronnie Carroll (18 August 1934 – 13 April 2015) was a Northern Irish singer, entertainer, and political candidate.

Career[edit]

Carroll was born Ronald Cleghorn in Roslyn Street, Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 1934, the son of a plumber.[1] He scored his first hit in 1956 with "Walk Hand in Hand" on the Philips label.

He is the only singer to have represented the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest two years in succession.[2] Having taken part in the 1960 UK Eurovision selection contest with the song "Girl with a Curl", he returned to win the selection and be Britain's entry in the 1962 contest, and with the song "Ring-a-Ding Girl" shared fourth place, the same placing he reached in 1963 with "Say Wonderful Things". This success was followed by two Top 10 hits during 1962 and 1963, but a lack of good material meant that he could not sustain a chart presence.

Carroll subsequently worked on cruise ships, including the QE2, with John Marcangelo who was the drummer with the Ronnie Carroll Orchestra. He played a pop musician named 'Ronnie' in the 1965 film Man in the Dark.

He contested his home Hampstead and Highgate constituency in the 1997 UK General Election, and the Uxbridge by-election in July that year with the Rainbow Alliance.[3][4] In the 2005 he released a comeback album, Back on Song.[1] He stood in the 2008 Haltemprice and Howden by-election as a candidate for Make Politicians History and received 29 votes despite announcing that he was trying to enter the record books by receiving no votes.[5][6]

He latterly lived in Hampstead, London, and was a regular caller to phone-in shows on BBC London 94.9. He died aged 80 on 13 April 2015.[7]

Carroll's name was on the ballot for the 2015 United Kingdom general election, in the Hampstead and Kilburn constituency, but he died within a week of the close of nominations. He was standing as an independent (without a party to call for a successor) so the ballot continued; if his posthumous presence had been greater than the winning margin, a case could have been made that the ballot be re-run. The ballot papers bore the optional byline 'The Eurovisionary Carroll'. [8] His death was widely announced in local papers and on the local authority's website but he still received 113 votes to come second to last, ahead of Robin Ellison of the the U(niversal) Party.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Through work in variety theatre he met his first wife, Millicent Martin, to whom he was married from 1958 to 1960. His second wife was the Olympic runner June Paul with whom he ran an unsuccessful nightclub in Grenada.[10] Carroll later married and divorced a third wife, South African-born Glenda Kentridge.[10] Carroll was survived by two sons with June and a daughter and son, his children with Glenda.[10]

Singles discography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Ronnie Carroll biography". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2015-04-15. 
  2. ^ O'Connor, John Kennedy. The Eurovision Song Contest - The Official History. Carlton Books, UK. 2007. ISBN 978-1-84442-994-3
  3. ^ "London Boroughs 1983-97". United Kingdom Election Results. Retrieved 2015-04-15. 
  4. ^ "United Kingdom Parliamentary Byelection results 1997". United Kingdom Election Results. Retrieved 2015-04-15. 
  5. ^ "A record-breaking by-election?". BBC. Retrieved 2015-04-15. 
  6. ^ "Haltemprice and Howden: Result in full". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 2008-07-11. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  7. ^ "Ronnie Carroll: Former Eurovision singer and election candidate dies - BBC News". BBC Online. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  8. ^ http://www.buzzfeed.com/jimwaterson/one-last-spin-for-ronnie
  9. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-32652291
  10. ^ a b c "Ronnie Carroll, singer and 'Eurovisionary' - obituary". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  11. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 95. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
The Allisons
with "Are You Sure?"
United Kingdom in the Eurovision Song Contest
1962, 1963
Succeeded by
Matt Monro
with "I Love the Little Things"