Timothy Bentinck

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Timothy Bentinck

Timothy Charles Robert Noel Bentinck, 12th Earl of Portland, 8th Count Bentinck (born 1 June 1953), commonly known as Tim Bentinck, is an English actor, most widely known for his long-running role as David Archer in the BBC Radio 4 series, The Archers. Lord Portland is also Viscount Woodstock, Baron Cirencester and a mediatised Count of the Holy Roman Empire, although he does not use any of his titles.

Background and education[edit]

The son of the non-conformist intellectual Henry Bentinck, Tim Bentinck was born on a sheep station in Tasmania. He was brought home to England when he was two and grew up in the Hertfordshire town of Berkhamsted. He attended a local prep school and Harrow School, then attended the University of East Anglia (UEA), where he spent most of his time at its drama society[1] before receiving a BA degree in the History of Art. After graduation, he then trained for an acting career at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.[citation needed]


Bentinck has been an actor since 1982 and is best known for the roles of David Archer in the BBC Radio 4 series The Archers and Tom Lacey in the BBC drama series "By the Sword Divided" (1983–85). He is also a voice-over artist, having provided the voice of James Bond for the video-game "The World Is Not Enough.".[2] For many years he was the voice of 'Mind The Gap' on the London Underground Piccadilly line. Bentinck has a wealth of theatre, television and film credits.[3] He was the original Minister in 'The Thick of It' and starred with David Jason in 'The Royal Bodyguard' in 2012.

As himself, Bentinck has appeared on Call My Bluff, won a round of University Challenge,[4] Celebrity Mastermind,[5] Pointless Celebrities and beaten Judith Keppel on science in Celebrity Eggheads.[6]

Bentinck has re-voiced Gérard Depardieu in the film Nouvelle France,[7] and Chow Yung Fat in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.[8] He has provided post production voices for major US and UK film and television productions since helping provide the voices of both Scottish and English armies alongside Mel Gibson in 'Braveheart'.

On stage, Bentinck tours a one-man show, 'Love Your Chocolates',[9] - a mixture of stories, comedy songs and multi-media, and played Frank in 'Educating Rita' [10] at the Watermill Theatre, Newbury, Berkshire, in 2009.

He writes regular travel articles for The Mail on Sunday [11] and his book, 'Avant Garde A Clue,[12] co-written with Albert Welling, is published on Kindle.

He is also an inventor with several patents to his name,[13] as well as a programmer/web site designer,[14] musician,[15] and writer.[16]


Bentinck's roles on television include episodes of The Politician's Husband The Royal Bodyguard, Twenty Twelve, The Thick of It, Doctors, Broken News, Shadow Play, The Armando Iannucci Shows, A Prince Among Men, Grange Hill, Made in Heaven, Square Deal, By the Sword Divided [17] and EastEnders.[18]


In 1990, The 9th Duke of Portland died, and Bentinck's father Henry, sixth cousin of the Duke, succeeded to the earldom of Portland. In 1997, Tim Bentinck succeeded his father. Although he took his seat in the unreformed upper house, Bentinck did not speak there before losing the right to do so as a result of the House of Lords Act 1999, and apart from a lecture tour of the United States on English Eccentrics,[when?] he has not used this title.[citation needed]

On 29 December 1732, the Hon. William Bentinck, Baron Bentinck of the Duchy of Guelders (second surviving son of Hans Willem Bentinck), was made a Count of the Holy Roman Empire as Count (Graf) Bentinck,[19] by Imperial Letters Patent. A Royal Licence of 1886 allows the use of this title in England as well. This title continues to be held by Tim Bentinck and his heirs.


Bentinck married the milliner Judith Emerson in 1979, and they have two sons:


Specific references:

  1. ^ "University of East Anglia". UEA. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  2. ^ "Tim Bentinck Interview". MI6. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  3. ^ "Tim Bentinvk". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  4. ^ "Tim Bentinck in University Challenge". YouTube. 2010-09-05. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  5. ^ "BBC One - Celebrity Mastermind, 2012/2013, Episode 10". Bbc.co.uk. 2013-01-05. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  6. ^ "BBC Two - Celebrity Eggheads, Series 5, Episode 8". Bbc.co.uk. 2012-12-19. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  7. ^ "Battle of the Brave (2004)". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  8. ^ "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  9. ^ "The Watermill Theatre - Love Your Chocolates! - An Evening With Tim Bentinck". Watermill.org.uk. 2011-07-03. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  10. ^ "The Watermill Theatre - EDUCATING RITA". Watermill.org.uk. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  11. ^ "The Archers move to Sydney: Tim Bentinck heads down under | Mail Online". Dailymail.co.uk. 2009-08-18. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  12. ^ "Avant Garde A Clue eBook: Isskott Belsohn, Albert Welling, Timothy Bentinck: Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  13. ^ "A child support - United Kingdom Patent GB2201083". Patent.ipexl.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  14. ^ "Tim Bentinck - Websites". Bentinck.net. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  15. ^ "Tim Bentinck - Music Recordings". Bentinck.net. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  16. ^ "Tim Bentinck - Travel". Bentinck.net. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  17. ^ Tim Bentinck at the Internet Movie Database
  18. ^ "EastEnders Episode 4627". Radio Times. Archived from the original on 11 April 2013. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  19. ^ Ruvigny, Melville H. (2000) [1909]. The Nobilities of Europe. Adamant Media Corporation. 

General references:

External links[edit]

Peerage of England
Preceded by
Henry Bentinck
Earl of Portland
Member of the House of Lords
(1997 – 1999)
German nobility
of the Holy Roman Empire
Preceded by
Henry Bentinck
Count Bentinck