Ken Goodwin (comedian)
|Birth name||William Kenneth Unwin|
7 April 1933|
Manchester, Lancashire, England
|Died||18 February 2012
(m. 1956–1977, her death)
(m. ? - 2012 his death)
|Children||2 (first marriage)|
|Notable works and roles||The Comedians|
He was born William Kenneth Unwin in Manchester, Lancashire. His father was a stoker. While he was still a child, his mother walked out on the family – an experience he blamed for his insecurity and shyness. His father died from cancer when Unwin was 15.
Goodwin was a great fan of George Formby. He did various jobs and started performing in working men's clubs, telling jokes and playing the ukulele. He then performed on the Royal Variety Show in 1971 and in a summer season at the London Palladium, before his television break on Opportunity Knocks followed by The Comedians. He also appeared on BBC TVs The Good Old Days. He was the first regular performer of 'The Comedians' to receive his own solo show on television, as ATV gave him his own TV special in 1972. He was a regular guest on television variety up to 1973, mainly on the ITV channels, with his most memorable slot being on the David Nixon Show in 1973. After that, appearances on television dwindled due to his wife's illness. He appeared twice in 1974 and not at all from 1975 onwards. However, he failed to re-appear on television as he started performing again in 1977. As he remained a regular and much sought-after live act, especially in Blackpool, the reason for the demise of his television career is unclear, particularly as other members of 'The Comedians' (Mike Reid, Charlie Williams, Bernard Manning, Frank Carson, Jim Bowen) overtook Goodwin to have much longer and more successful careers on T.V. Particularly so as other comedians have since used similar formats (one-line pun-gags) to glittering careers; most notably Tim Vine.
He was famous for his giggle and catchphrase, "settle down now" which he used a lot on The Comedians.
Ken married his first wife, Pat Earith in 1956 she fell ill in 1974. Goodwin abandoned his career to care for her until her death in 1977. They had been married for 21 years. His second marriage was to singer and dancer Vicki Lane until his death in 2012.
- Ken Goodwin obituary. The Guardian
- Jamieson, Teddy (2004) "The Last Laugh", Glasgow Herald, 15 May 2004, p. 20
- Hayward, Anthony (29 February 2012). "Ken Goodwin obituary". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
- Eddie Pedder (1985). Who's Who on Television, 3rd Edition. Michael Joseph. ISBN 0-907965-31-8.
- Phillips, Judith (23 February 2012). "Comedians Ken Goodwin dies at Rhos-on-Sea nursing home". North Wales Weekly News. Retrieved 23 February 2012.
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