Geoffrey Bayldon

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Geoffrey Bayldon
Bayldon in 2009
Albert Geoffrey Bayldon

(1924-01-07)7 January 1924
Leeds, England
Died10 May 2017(2017-05-10) (aged 93)
Years active1952–2010
PartnerAlan Rowe (died 2000)

Albert Geoffrey Bayldon[2] (7 January 1924 – 10 May 2017)[3] was an English actor.[4] After playing roles in many stage productions, including the works of William Shakespeare, he became known for portraying the title role of the children's series Catweazle (1969–70).[5] Bayldon's other long-running parts include the Crowman in Worzel Gummidge (1979–81) and Magic Grandad in the BBC television series Watch (1995).[6]

Early life[edit]

Bayldon was born 7 January 1924[3] in Leeds and attended Bridlington School and Hull College of Architecture.[7] Following service in the Royal Air Force during World War II, he appeared in amateur theatricals and then trained at the Old Vic Theatre School.[8]


Bayldon enjoyed a substantial stage career, including work in the West End and for the RSC.[9][10] He made several film appearances in the 1960s and 1970s, including King Rat (1965), To Sir, with Love (1967), Casino Royale (as Q) (1967), the Envy segment of The Magnificent Seven Deadly Sins (1971), the Marc Bolan/T. Rex film Born to Boogie (1972), The Pink Panther Strikes Again (1976), as well as the film versions of Steptoe and Son, Steptoe and Son Ride Again (1973) as the vicar, and Porridge (1979) as the Prison Governor.

Bayldon also appeared in several horror films; Dracula and Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed for Hammer Films and The House That Dripped Blood, Asylum and Tales from the Crypt for Amicus.[4] In 2004, after many years of successful television work he appeared in the film Ladies in Lavender.[11]

He appeared in Doctor Who with a guest appearance as Organon in The Creature from the Pit (1979) opposite Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor.[12] Subsequently, he played an alternative First Doctor in two audio plays based on the Doctor Who television series by Big Finish Productions in the Doctor Who Unbound series: Auld Mortality (2003) and A Storm of Angels (2005).[13] In 1963, Bayldon had been one of the first actors offered the role of the Doctor.[14]

Bayldon's other television roles include, ITV Play of the Week (1957, 1959, 1964, 1967), The Avengers (1961 and 1967), Z-Cars (1963, 1968), Theatre 625 (1964–1968), The Wednesday Play (1968, 1969), ITV Sunday Night Theatre (1970, 1972), Space: 1999 (1976), The Tomorrow People (1976), Tales of the Unexpected (1980, 1983), Blott on the Landscape (1985), Star Cops (1987), Rumpole of the Bailey (1987), The Chronicles of Narnia (1989).[15] He later took part in a number of BBC Schools programmes,[16] where he displayed a number of otherwise unexploited talents (such as singing). In 1993, he played Simplicio in the Open University video Newton's Revolution.[17]

In 1986, Bayldon provided the vocals on Paul Hardcastle's "The Wizard" which was also used (without the vocal) as the theme for BBC1's Top of the Pops.[18][19]

Among his later television appearances were the Five game show Fort Boyard (1998–2001), Waking the Dead (2004), Heartbeat (2004) and Casualty (2006, after previous appearances in 1991, 1997 and 2004).[15] His final television appearances, before his retirement, were New Tricks (2007) and My Family (2010).[20]


Bayldon died on 10 May 2017, aged 93, from undisclosed causes.[21] He was predeceased by his partner, actor Alan Rowe, who died in 2000.

TV and film credits[edit]


  1. ^ "ALBERT GEOFFREY BAYLDON Deceased". RangersReview. Pursuant to the Trustee Act 1925 anyone having a claim against or an interest in the Estate of the deceased, late of 8 Sherwood Close, Barnes, London, SWI3 OJD, who died on 10/05/2017, must send written particulars to the address below by 16/11/2017, after which date the Estate will be distributed having regard only to claims and interests notified.
  2. ^ "".
  3. ^ a b Passantino, Dom (11 May 2017). "Geoffrey Bayldon, beloved star of Catweazle, dead at 93". International Business Times UK. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Geoffrey Bayldon". Archived from the original on 19 March 2017.
  5. ^ "Geoffrey Bayldon, star of Catweazle and Worzel Gummidge, dies at 93". The Telegraph. 11 May 2017.
  6. ^ Saunders, Emmeline (11 May 2017). "Worzel Gummidge star Geoffrey Bayldon dies at the age of 93". Daily Mirror.
  7. ^ "Obituary – Geoffrey Bayldon, actor and star of Catweazle". The Herald. Glasgow. 13 May 2017.
  8. ^ Alan Curthoys & John Doyle (1985). Who's Who on Television, 1st Edition. Independent Television Books Ltd. ISBN 978-0-900727-72-6.
  9. ^ McFarlane, Brian (16 May 2016). The Encyclopedia of British Film: Fourth edition. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9781526111968 – via Google Books.
  10. ^ "Geoffrey Bayldon - Theatricalia".
  11. ^ "Geoffrey Bayldon – Movies and Filmography – AllMovie". AllMovie.
  12. ^ "The Creature from the Pit ★★".
  13. ^ "Doctor Who – Unbound – Released Items – Ranges – Big Finish".
  14. ^ Mason, Peter (11 May 2017). "Geoffrey Bayldon obituary". The Guardian.
  15. ^ a b "Geoffrey Bayldon".
  16. ^ "Look and Read/Sky Hunter –".
  17. ^ Newton's revolution: understanding motion. 17 September 2017. OCLC 369882613.
  18. ^ "Catweazle actor Geoffrey Bayldon dies aged 93". 12 May 2017.
  19. ^ "Paul Hardcastle – The Wizard (Extended Version)". discogs. 1986.
  20. ^ "Worzel Gummidge and Catweazel star Geoffrey Bayldon dies aged 93". 11 May 2017.
  21. ^ "Geoffrey Bayldon: Catweazle actor dies aged 93". BBC News. 11 May 2017. Retrieved 31 October 2021.

External links[edit]