Harold Bennett

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For other people named Harold Bennett, see Harold Bennett (disambiguation).
Harold Bennett
Harold Bennett AYBS.jpg
Bennett as Young Mr Grace in Are You Being Served?
Born Harold Bennett
(1899-09-17)17 September 1899
Hastings, Sussex, England
Died 15 September 1981(1981-09-15) (aged 81)
London, England
Years active 1965–1981

Harold Bennett (17 September 1899 – 15 September 1981) was an English actor best remembered for having played 'Young Mr. Grace' in the 1970s British sitcom Are You Being Served?.

Biography[edit]

Bennett was born in Hastings, Sussex. After leaving school at the age of twelve, in his early life he toured America as a clown with a circus, and later taught English at the Working Men's College in London. During World War I he served as a courier, initially on horseback, then on motorcycle. After the war he took up acting and eventually worked as stage producer in the now defunct Tower Theatre, London. He subsequently pursued a career as a draughtsman for an electric company, only taking up his acting career again following retirement.

Harold Bennett died of a heart attack on 15 September 1981, two days before his 82nd birthday. His wife predeceased him in the Thirties; he was survived by their three children. One of his children, John, was also an actor.

Acting career[edit]

He played the recurring character Mr. Blewitt in Dad's Army from 1969 to 1977, but it was as Young Mr. Grace, the ancient, amiably callous owner of Grace Brothers department store in British sitcom Are You Being Served? that he achieved his greatest fame. His last appearance in Are You Being Served aired some three months after his death, having been filmed earlier in the year.

Bennett also played the role of the aged Archdeacon Pulteney in The Stalls of Barchester, the 1971 BBC A Ghost Story for Christmas broadcast 24 December 1971 and adapted from the M.R. James story of the same name. Bennett appeared in several films, including an old man in Vote, Vote, Vote for Nigel Barton (1965), a photographer in Games That Lovers Play (1970) and as Lord Tryke in The Ups and Downs of a Handyman (1975).

On the stage, he appeared in a Royal Shakespeare Company production of London Assurance, and in an Open University production of Chekhov's The Three Sisters.

Television Roles[edit]

Year Title Role
1976–1977 Clayhanger Mr Shushions
1969–1977 Dad's Army Mr Blewitt
1972–1981 Are You Being Served? Young Mr Grace
1980 Oh Happy Band Reverend

Selected filmography[edit]

External links[edit]