Charles William Tingwell
3 January 1923
Coogee, New South Wales, Australia
|Died||15 May 2009 (aged 86)|
|Education||Sydney Grammar School|
|Occupation||Actor, radio announcer, pilot|
Audrey May Wilson
(m. 1951; died 1996)
|Awards||Logie Hall of Fame Inductee (1994)|
Raymond Longford Award (1998)
Member of the Order of Australia (1999)
Australian Film Walk of Fame Inductee (2008)
Charles William Tingwell AM (3 January 1923 – 15 May 2009), known professionally as Bud Tingwell or Charles 'Bud' Tingwell, was an Australian film, television, theatre and radio actor. One of the veterans of Australian film, he acted in his first motion picture in 1946 and went on to appear in more than 100 films and numerous TV programs in both the United Kingdom and Australia.
Early life and military service
Tingwell was born in the Sydney suburb of Coogee, the son of William Harvey Tingwell and Enid (née Green). William volunteered as a surf lifesaver at Coogee Surf Life Saving Club where, in 1922, a colleague noticed Enid's pregnancy and asked, 'What's budding there?', and 'Bud' became the nickname for their baby. As an adolescent, he was encouraged by his father to be an accountant, but Tingwell failed the entrance exam.
World War II
In 1941, aged 18, Tingwell volunteered for war service overseas with the Royal Australian Air Force. Under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan, personnel from Commonwealth air forces formed part of a joint training and assignment system. Consequently, Tingwell trained as a pilot in Canada during 1942. Despite damaging a Harvard training aircraft in August, he later qualified as a pilot and was commissioned as a pilot officer that December. He was posted to the Mediterranean Theatre and underwent operational training with No. 74 Operational Training Unit RAF, in British Palestine, and qualified to fly the Hawker Hurricane and Supermarine Spitfire.
On his reasons for going to war (2002):
- It was just that you didn't not try to go [...] You were so ... orientated towards the fact that "the War's on" and "this is the right thing to do". We also did know ... that difficult things were happening in Europe and ... we had Jewish friends who had [relatives] who had an awful time ... and refugees were arriving in Australia in the pre-war time ... We had a German family next door and they had a son-in-law who ... was a suspect[ed] ... Nazi sympathiser, so he had to ... be interned ... We knew a lot about Hitler and about Mussolini.
In January 1944, he was posted to No. 680 Squadron RAF, a photo reconnaissance unit, and flew 75 sorties in Mosquitos and Spitfires during the Italian campaign. Other aircraft that Tingwell was qualified to fly included the Bristol Blenheim, Martin Baltimore, Bristol Beaufighter and Airspeed Oxford. He was promoted to flying officer in June 1943 and flight lieutenant in December 1944.
Towards the end of the war, Tingwell was transferred back to Australia. He was posted to No. 5 Operational Training Unit RAAF as a flying instructor in June 1945, and then in December 1945, after the war had ended, he was posted to No. 87 Squadron RAAF, flying photo-reconnaissance Mosquitoes, until his demobilisation in March 1946. His war service earned him the 1939–45 Star, Italy Star, Defence Medal, War Medal 1939–1945, and Australia Service Medal 1939–1945. Tingwell remained a reservist into the 1950s.
Post-war life and acting career
After returning to Australia, Tingwell married his childhood sweetheart, Audrey May Wilson, who died in 1996. They had two children.
In 1946, Tingwell was given his first film role, in Smithy, cast as a RAAF control tower officer – winning the role as he could supply his own RAAF uniform..
Tingwell had an excellent support part in Bitter Springs (1950), made by Ealing Studios with Chips Rafferty; Tingwell played Rafferty's bigoted son. He had a similar role in Kangaroo (1952), a Hollywood-financed film shot in Australia for 20th Century Fox. He then appeared in I Found Joe Barton (1952), the first TV show shot in Australia.
Fox liked Tingwell's work in Kangaroo and invited him to Los Angeles to play the part of Lt Harry Carstairs in The Desert Rats, in which he appeared opposite Chips Rafferty, James Mason and Richard Burton. They offered him a long-term contract but Tingwell turned it down as he wanted to return to Australia.
Tingwell played the lead in King of the Coral Sea (1954) alongside Rafferty. In 1954, he co-starred with Gordon Chater in Top of the Bill, the first of the famous satirical revues staged at Sydney's Phillip Street Theatre.
The Australian film and radio industry slumped with the advent of television and Tingwell decided to move to the UK. He used the opportunity of a role in Ealing's The Shiralee (1957), which was filmed in Australia and London. Tingwell travelled to England to complete his scenes and decided to stay.
Tingwell played the role of Inspector Craddock in all four films of the Miss Marple series, starring Margaret Rutherford, from 1961 to 1964: Murder, She Said (1961), Murder at the Gallop (1963), Murder Most Foul (1964) and Murder Ahoy! (1964). For Hammer Films he appeared in The Secret of Blood Island (1964) and Dracula: Prince of Darkness (1966).
He had the lead in a TV series An Enemy of the State (1965).
In the late 1960s, he performed various minor voice roles for the Gerry Anderson "Supermarionation" TV series Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, besides appearing in the first series of Catweazle.
In 1969 until the end of the play's run, he appeared as Robert Danvers in the long running farce There's a Girl in My Soup at the Comedy Theatre, London.
He was the recurring character of motel manager Kevin McArthur in Crossroads in the late 1960s and early 1970s. (Vincent Ball played McArthur in 1970–1973). He had a small role in Nobody Runs Forever (1968) with Rod Taylor.
Return to Australia
Tingwell appeared in many other films during his time in Britain, spending a total of 16 years as a "London Aussie". In 1973, he returned to Australia with his wife and children, and shortly after won the role of Inspector Reg Lawson in the long-running TV series Homicide. This was followed by small roles in a number of major Australian films, such as Breaker Morant (1980), Puberty Blues (1981) and All the Rivers Run (1983). He also played the recurring role of farmer Ted Campbell in the soap A Country Practice in the late 1980s and early 1990s and as the Narrator from The Flying Scotsman in Australia
Revival in popularity
Tingwell's career went through a quiet period during the late 1980s and early 1990s, until he took on the role of "Gramps" in "Charlie the Wonderdog", a recurring segment on The Late Show, in 1993. His role in The Late Show was later to win him a major role as lawyer Lawrence Hammill in the film The Castle (1997). He later stated that this role helped him to recover from the death of his wife the previous year.
After the success of The Castle, Tingwell's career underwent a revival during the late 1990s and early 2000s. This saw him take on small roles in the commercial films The Craic (1999) and The Dish (2000), and in the TV mini-series Changi, as well as the lead role in the romantic drama film Innocence (2000). Tingwell also had a recurring guest role in the soap opera Neighbours from 2000 to 2003, playing Henry O'Rourke. He had previously appeared in the soap in 1993 as Bert Willis. He appeared as John Conroy in the musical theatre production The Man from Snowy River: Arena Spectacular, which toured Australian capital cities twice during 2002.
In 2004, Tingwell published a memoir, Bud: A Life. In 2006, he launched his own website, which attracted 500 registered users in just over a week. On 5 October that year, he created his first blog. He continued to act regularly until his death, in a number of films and TV programmes including eight episodes of Bed of Roses that aired in 2010. Among his last appearances, he hosted both Celebrity Circus and 20 to 1 and appeared on a celebrity special of Temptation with his daughter, Virginia.
- Come Up Smiling (1939) .... Man in Crowd (uncredited)
- Smithy (1946) .... Control Tower Officer (uncredited)
- Always Another Dawn (1948) .... Terry Regan
- Into the Straight (1949) .... Sam Curzon
- Bitter Springs (1950) .... John King
- The Glenrowan Affair (1951) .... Narrator (voice)
- Kangaroo (1952) .... Matt
- I Found Joe Barton (1952, Short) .... Al Munch
- The Desert Rats (1953) .... Lieutenant Harry Carstairs
- King of the Coral Sea (1953) .... Peter Merriman
- Captain Thunderbolt (1953) .... Alan Blake
- Smiley (1956) .... Mr Stevens
- The Shiralee (1957) .... Jim Muldoon
- Dunkirk (1958) .... Sergeant in Cookhouse (uncredited)
- Life in Emergency Ward 10 (1959) .... Dr. Alan Dawson
- Bobbikins (1959) .... Luke Parker
- Cone of Silence (1960) .... Captain Braddock
- Tarzan the Magnificent (1960) .... Conway
- Murder, She Said (1961) .... Inspector Craddock
- Murder at the Gallop (1963) .... Inspector Craddock
- Murder Most Foul (1964) .... Inspector Craddock
- Murder Ahoy! (1964) .... Inspector Craddock
- The Secret of Blood Island (1964) .... Major Dryden
- Dracula: Prince of Darkness (1966) .... Alan Kent
- Thunderbirds Are Go (1966) .... Dr. Tony Grant (voice)
- Nobody Runs Forever (1968) .... Jacko
- Petersen (1974) .... Reverend Petersen
- End Play (1975) .... Dr. Fairburn
- Eliza Fraser (1976) .... Duncan Fraser
- Summerfield (1977) .... Dr. Miller
- Money Movers (1978) .... Jack Henderson
- The Journalist (1979) .... Sid Mitchell
- Breaker Morant (1980) .... Lt. Colonel Denny
- Puberty Blues (1981) .... The Headmaster
- Freedom (1982) .... Cassidy
- My First Wife (1984) .... Helen's Father
- Annie's Coming Out (1984) .... Judge
- Malcolm (1986) .... Tram Depot Supervisor
- Windrider (1986) .... Stewart Simpson Senior
- Bushfire Moon (1987) .... Max Bell
- Evil Angels (a.k.a. A Cry in the Dark) (1988) .... Justice James Muirhead
- The Flying Scotsman in Australia (1992) .... Narrator
- Shotgun Wedding (1993) .... Gary Judge (voice)
- The Castle (1997) .... Lawrence Hammill QC
- Amy (1997) .... Country Doctor
- The Craic (1999) .... Farmer
- The Wog Boy (2000) .... Mr. Walker
- Innocence (2000) .... Andreas Borg
- The Dish (2000) .... Reverend Loftus
- WillFull (2001) .... Martin
- The Inside Story (2002) .... Edward Brooks
- Ned Kelly (2003) .... Graham Berry
- Human Touch (2004) .... Anna's Step-father
- Laughing Stock (2005) .... Grandad
- Irresistible (2006) .... Sam
- Jindabyne (2006) .... Minister
- Three Blind Mice (2008) .... Bob
- Salvation (2008) .... Gallery Visitor
- Menzies and Churchill at War (2008, TV Movie) .... Sir Winston Churchill
- Remembering Nigel (2009) .... Himself
- Emergency – Ward 10 (1957) .... Dr. Alan Dawson
- The Avengers "The Nutshell" (1963).... Mike Venner
- An Enemy of the State (1965) .... Harry Sutton
- Out of the Unknown ('The Counterfeit Man', episode) (1965) .... Captain Dantor
- Thunderbirds (1966) .... Various characters (voices)
- The Avengers "Return of the Cybernauts" (1967) .... Dr. Neville
- Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons (1967) .... Dr. Fawn, Captain Brown and others (voices)
- A Man of our Times (1968) .... David Soames
- Catweazle (1970) .... Mr. Bennet
- UFO (1970) .... Beaver James in "Mindbender"
- Homicide (1973-1976) .... Inspector Reg Lawson
- The Sullivans (1976) .... Dr. Hammond
- All the Rivers Run (1983 mini-series) .... Uncle Charles
- Prisoner (a.k.a. Prisoner: Cell Block H) (1985-1986) .... Dr. Massey (3 episodes, 1985) / Mr. Hudson (2 episodes, 1986)
- All the Rivers Run 2 (1989 mini-series) ... Uncle Charles
- The Late Show (1993) .... Gramps in "Charlie the Wonder Dog"
- Mother and Son (1994) .... The Judge
- The Silver Brumby (1998) .... Benni
- Round the Twist (2000) .... Derek
- Neighbours (2000-2003) .... Henry O'Rourke
- Changi (2001) .... David Colins (in old age)
|1981||"The Breaker" (with John Williamson)||100||'True Blue – The Best of John Williamson|
- "Bud Tingwell Biography – Official Website". Budtingwell.com.au. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "Film and TV Legend Charles "Bud" Tingwell Dies". The Age. Melbourne, Australia. 15 May 2009.
- "Bud Tingwell Biography – Official Website". Budtingwell.com.au. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- Lane, Richard (2000). The Golden Age of Australian Radio Drama Volume 2. National Film and Sound Archive. pp. 127–130.
- Robin Hughes (interviewer), "Charles 'Bud' Tingwell: Full Interview Transcript" (recorded 2002), Australian Biography, Access date: 20 February 2022.
- Service record of 413915 Flight Lieutenant Charles Tingwell, National Archives of Australia, Series A9300, File TINGWELL C W, https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=5256549
- Sydney Morning Herald, 16 May 2009 (obituary).
- "Advertising". The Sydney Morning Herald. No. 34, 263. New South Wales, Australia. 15 October 1947. p. 11. Retrieved 19 March 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- "Stage Whispers". The Sunday Herald (Sydney). No. 94. New South Wales, Australia. 12 November 1950. p. 8 (Sunday Herald Features). Retrieved 19 March 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- Charles Tingwell, The Independent, London, October 1991.
- "What's Doug secret?". Inside Soap. Attic Futura (UK) Ltd (17): 55. January 1994.
- "It's An Honour". Itsanhonour.gov.au. 7 June 1999. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "Australian Film Festival Walk of Fame". Chic Traveller. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011. Retrieved 28 June 2011.
- "Film and TV Legend Bud Tingwell Dead". The Age. Australia. 15 May 2009. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- Sky News Report on Tingwell's Death
- Samantha Donovan for PM. "Tingwell to Receive State Funeral". Australia: ABC News. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "The Australian". 20 May 2009.
- "Final Farewell for 'Bud' Tingwell". The Sydney Morning Herald. 20 May 2009.
- Leo, Simon (20 May 2009). "State Funeral Farewells Charles 'Bud' Tingwell". ABC News. Australia. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "Hundreds Gather for Charles 'Bud' Tingwell's Funeral". 20 May 2009.
- "Stars Farewell Bud Tingwell". Sbs.com.au. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "A Cry in the Dark (1988) – Release Dates". IMDb. Retrieved 14 June 2012.
- Dooley, John; Tingwell, Charles; Daly, Michael; Naylor, Greg; Mobil Oil Australia; Bendigo Street Productions; Vision Entertainment Australia; 100th Oboe Pty. Ltd (1992), The Flying Scotsman in Australia, Vision Entertainment Australia [distributor], retrieved 9 May 2016
- "Screen Australia: Menzies and Churchill at War". Screen Australia. Retrieved 3 August 2017.
- Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 310. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.