Talk:Alan Whicker

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I wonder how he took to the Monty Python sketch that showed lots of Alan Whickers on an island.....

It says online that he took it rather well, he thought it was funny. (Curvebill 23:02, 27 February 2007 (UTC))

Date of birth[edit]

Alan Whicker was actually born on 2nd August 1921, in Cairo, Egypt. (Source his birth certificate)

The Article (and the contributor above) states that The Sun revealed Whicker's year of birth to be 1921 'several years ago'. I have been unable to find anything online to substantiate this and The Sun's website in 2007 was cheerfully describing him as 82 [1], thus making his year of birth 1925. I shall therefore remove the Sun reference and change his date of birth to 1925 unless the truth of the birth certificate assertion can be proven with references. --Mr Pig's Uncle Mike (talk) 19:38, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
An anonymous IP has changed Whicker's year of birth to 1921 again without comment. I can still find no sources online backing up the 1921 claim and would add to my Sun reference above, this [2] from the BBC, again stating his year of birth as 1925. I intend to revert the edit.--Mr Pig's Uncle Mike (talk) 23:31, 25 February 2008 (UTC)
OK. Getting a bit predictable now. I really can't see where all these 1921 references are coming from... Here's another for 1925 [3]. --Mr Pig's Uncle Mike (talk) 20:29, 9 March 2008 (UTC)
Obviously something going on about his birth certificate (page said "despite his insistence otherwise, his birth certificate shows" that he was born in 1921) but, seeing as we should be extra careful in the biographies of living persons, I have changed it back to 1925 pending references to the contrary. --Mr Pig's Uncle Mike (talk) 20:36, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

In fact it was the Daily Mail that revealed this, although Whicker denies it.[4] There is certainly an age discrepancy here as we know that he was an army captain by 1943, which would have been impossible if he was born in 1925. -- (talk) 22:21, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for clarifying that. I have no problem with the present treatment of the DOB issue (dates in the alternative) although, as an aside, I would suggest that the Daily Mail makes many claims on a day-to-day basis, many of which are of dubious reliability. It is notable, too, that the assertion has not gained more credibility elsewhere. --Mr Pig's Uncle Mike (talk) 22:06, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
All of his reliable obits say that he was born in 1925, but this would have made him a WW2 British Army officer at the age of 18-20. This is one of the reasons why his date of birth has been challenged.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 17:18, 12 July 2013 (UTC)
The Times obituary has the headline "Globetrotting broadcaster Alan Whicker dies at 91", but articles on the Telegraph and Guardian websites go with 87. Philip Cross (talk) 18:01, 12 July 2013 (UTC)
91 is more realistic for a WW2 veteran, but it comes down to what the reliable sources say. Since he was born in Cairo, it may be hard to clear up.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 18:20, 12 July 2013 (UTC)
His service number was 242279 and he received his commission as a 2nd Lieutenant on 8 August 1942: "No. 35677". The London Gazette (Supplement). 21 August 1942. . It must be doubted whether the British Army would give a commission to someone who had only just turned 17 during the Second World War, although it might well give one to a 21-year-old. His mention in dispatches was on 23 March 1944 when he was a Lieutenant: "No. 36436". The London Gazette (Supplement). 21 March 1944. . Sam Blacketer (talk) 08:51, 13 July 2013 (UTC)
There are several photographs of Alan Whicker taken during WW2 in his Daily Mail obituary. They clearly show a man in his 20s, not 18-20 years old, as the official biographies say. There is something odd here, and I would bet the farm that Alan Whicker was in his 90s when he died. Anyway, he died at 87 according to most reliable sources.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 08:59, 13 July 2013 (UTC)
Primary source just for information the index of Consular Births 1921-1925 has a birth of Donald A. Whicker in Cairo, although it doesnt give a an exact year. MilborneOne (talk) 17:11, 13 July 2013 (UTC)
Just another more reliable source that says he was born "Donald Alan Whicker" rather than the other way round. [5] MilborneOne (talk) 17:21, 13 July 2013 (UTC)
Primary source just for information when an Alan Whicker described as a journalist departed on the SS Oxfordshire from Liverpool to Gibraltar on 13 October 1949 he gave his age as 28. He apparently was with a news cameraman and other journalists. MilborneOne (talk) 17:17, 13 July 2013 (UTC)
From The Financial Times (free subscription required): "Whicker was born in Cairo on what he claimed in Who’s Who was August 2 1925 – but school records show otherwise. He was sensitive when challenged about his age. Even a BBC radio profile in 2005 celebrated his '80th' birthday when he was by other accounts 84, with a birth year of 1921." It is unclear why Whicker may have knocked four years off his age. While most journalists were happy to go along with the Who's Who entry for his obituaries, this makes him implausibly young during the Anzio campaign.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 17:44, 13 July 2013 (UTC)
Definitely strange, not sure why there would be such a lack of clarity, or even a discrepancy of as much as 4 years. The WW2 photos seem to be pretty strong evidence for an earlier date of birth than 1925. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:13, 16 July 2013 (UTC)
I say let it say born August 2, 1921 or 1925, with infobox saying "age 87 or 91" on death. Lilduff90 (talk) 23:17, 16 July 2013 (UTC)
I think that with the number of reliable sources it should say 1921 with a footnote that some sources claim 1925. MilborneOne (talk) 11:54, 17 July 2013 (UTC)
To provide clarity for readers I agree that precedence should be given to one year followed by 'some sources state' the other year.Sealman (talk) 21:05, 17 July 2013 (UTC)

Barclaycard ads[edit]

It's something he's fairly well known for, but no mention is made of them here...they were done on the back of his Whickers World fame (talk) 21:19, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

Richmond, London....[edit]

is still in Surrey. Although now in Greater London the old county descriptive location can still apply without qualification. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:24, 2 June 2010 (UTC)

No. Since 1 April 1965 it is in the London Borough of Richmond and hence no longer in Surrey. Jim Michael (talk) 23:18, 12 July 2013 (UTC)

Wikka Rap[edit]

Fans of Top of the Pops may recall Wikka Rap by The Evasions in 1981, which was a spoof rap performed by Graham de Wilde as Alan Whicker. I wasn't sure whether to add this per WP:POPCULTURE, as it is not as well known as the Monty Python sketch. Graham de Wilde also composed the 1980s version of the Alan Whicker theme music, which is called Newsweek.[6]--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 10:15, 13 July 2013 (UTC)


A story was reported in early editions of many newspaper web-sites for 12 July and but was later removed, perhaps because it is only apocryphal. However it can still be referenced in Daily Mirror "While travelling in America, he heard about an Alan Whicker impersonation contest. He entered and came third." It was rightly removed from the article, but it is still worth recording here. JMcC (talk) 22:04, 16 July 2013 (UTC)

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