Gerald Campion

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Gerald Campion
Actor Gerald Campion.jpg
Gerald Theron Campion

(1921-04-23)23 April 1921
Died9 July 2002(2002-07-09) (aged 81)
Alma materRADA
Years active1938-1992
Spouse(s)Jean Symond (1947-1972) (divorced) (3 children)
Susan Mark (1972-2002) (his death)
ChildrenAnn, Anthony, Angelica
Parent(s)Cyril Campion

Gerald Theron Campion (23 April 1921 – 9 July 2002) was an English actor best remembered for his role as Billy Bunter in a 1950s television adaptation (Billy Bunter of Greyfriars School) of books by Frank Richards (Charles Hamilton).[1]


Campion was born in Bloomsbury, London, and was the son of screenwriter Cyril Campion.[2] He won a place at RADA at age 15, and appeared in numerous films and television programmes — mostly comedies.[3] In 1937, he appeared in Tavs Neiiendam's radio play Inspiration to a Poet on the BBC Home Service.[4]

His only major success was as Bunter, a juvenile role he played successfully despite being much older than his character (he was 40 when the series ended).[5] Campion later reprised the role (now Lord Bunter of Hove, who had succeeded in betting shops and property) in the BBC Radio 7 series Whatever Happened to ...? in the episode that speculated on whether Bunter's form master at Greyfriars School, Horace Henry Samuel Quelch, became a secret agent.[6]

In 1979, he recorded an appearance in Shada, a Doctor Who story which was not completed in its intended form.[7]

After dropping out of acting, Campion ran clubs and restaurants in London's Soho, the best known of which is Gerry's, a long running private members' club attracting a mainly theatrical membership.[8][9]

He died in 2002 aged 81 in Agen, Aquitaine, France.[3]

Personal life[edit]

He was married twice: to Jean Symond in 1947 (divorced 1972) and to Susan Marks in 1972 until his death.[2] He had three children with his first wife: Anthea (a singer who married composer Thomas Rajna), Anthony and Angelica.[9] He lived in Wittersham, Kent for many years. His mother Blanche Louise Tunstall Bear was Charlie Chaplin's first cousin.[10]

Gerry's Bar[edit]

The Soho drinking bar in Dean Street, London, is named after him.[8]

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^ Profile of Gerald Campion Archived 4 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine: website. Retrieved on 4 October 2007.
  2. ^ a b "Gerald Campion". 11 July 2002 – via
  3. ^ a b "Gerald Campion".
  4. ^ The Times, "Broadcasting: A Danish Play", 11 March 1937.
  5. ^ Dixon, Stephen (10 July 2002). "Obituary: Gerald Campion". the Guardian.
  6. ^ "Horace Henry Samuel Quelch, Series 1, Whatever Happened to...? - BBC Radio 7". BBC.
  7. ^ Campbell, Mark (24 March 2011). "Doctor Who: The Complete Guide". Little, Brown Book Group – via Google Books.
  8. ^ a b Simkins, Michael (11 July 2002). "Michael Simkins recalls an evening with actor Gerald Campion". the Guardian.
  9. ^ a b Press, Hastings Independent (9 February 2018). "My Dad, Gerald Campion".
  10. ^ David Robinson, Chaplin His Life And Art

External links[edit]