Richard Pearson (actor)

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Richard Pearson
Born Richard de Pearsall Pearson
(1918-08-01)1 August 1918
Monmouth, Monmouthshire
Died 2 August 2011(2011-08-02) (aged 93)
Northwood, London
Occupation Actor
Years active 1937–2009
Spouse(s) Patricia Dickson (1949–2011, his death)
Children 2 sons

Richard de Pearsall Pearson (1 August 1918 – 2 August 2011), an English character actor, was born and brought up in Monmouth.[1] He was educated at Aymestrey Court, Worcester, and at Monmouth School, where his father taught French.


Notable films of his career included Brian Desmond Hurst's Scrooge (1951) as well as a brief appearance in John Schlesinger's Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971) and cameo roles in three films by Roman Polanski: Macbeth (1971), Tess (1979) and Pirates (1986). Pearson made his stage debut at age 18 at London's Collins's Music Hall, but did not make his film debut until the age of 32, when he played a Sergeant in the motion picture The Girl is Mine (1950). This was followed a year later by his performance as Mr Tupper in Scrooge.

In later years, he is perhaps best known for his role as Mole in Cosgrove Hall's The Wind in the Willows (1983), its subsequent television series, which led on from the original film, and its spin-off programme Oh, Mr. Toad, in both of which he starred alongside David Jason, Peter Sallis and Michael Hordern.[2] He also appeared in episodes of One Foot in the Grave as Victor Meldrew's absent-minded brother, Alfred and the Men Behaving Badly episode "Three Girlfriends" as Gary's father Mr Strang. He played Mr. Pye in the 1985 TV movie Marple: The Moving Finger.[3][4]

Private life[edit]

Richard Pearson fought in the Second World War with the 52nd (Lowland) Infantry Division. He was mentioned in dispatches and left the army with the rank of lieutenant-colonel. He married the actress Patricia Dickson (1927–2014) in 1949. They lived until the late 1950s in Nassau Street, in the Fitzrovia district of London, then in Beckenham, and latterly in Richmond upon Thames. Pearson had been suffering from myocardial degeneration and died peacefully on 2 August 2011, the morning after his 93rd birthday, survived by his wife and their two sons, one of whom, Patrick Pearson, is also an actor.[3][4]

Selected filmography[edit]

Selected stage appearances[edit]


  1. ^ Monmouth and Monmouthshire were not definitively incorporated into Wales until 1974. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
  2. ^ Vahimagi, Tise (1994). British Television. Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-818336-5
  3. ^ a b "Richard Pearson – Obituary – The Telegraph". Retrieved 26 February 2015. 
  4. ^ a b "Richard Pearson obituary | Stage | The Guardian". Retrieved 26 February 2015. 
  5. ^ Arthur Macrea [1], [2], Retrieved 2 August 2014.
  6. ^ Retrieved 2 August 2014.
  7. ^ "Richard Pearson obituary | Stage | The Guardian". Retrieved 26 February 2015. 
  8. ^ Daily Telegraph obituary. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  9. ^ Gielgud's Letters ed. Richard Mangan Retrieved 2 August 2014, 20 June 1970.
  10. ^ Retrieved 2 August 2014.. Peter Shaffer in the introduction to the published edition of the play (London: André Deutsch, 1988): "Initially Miss Smith offers a comic solo of glittering perfection. When she is joined by Margaret Tyzack – a performer to match her royally – this turns into a duet of glittering perfection. And when finally she is joined by Mr Pearson this turns into a trio which creates on the stage of the Globe a compound interest of intoxication."
  11. ^ Gillespie, M.P. (1996). Oscar Wilde and the Poetics of Ambiguity. University Press of Florida. p. 100. ISBN 9780813014531. Retrieved 26 February 2015. 

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