Tony Britton

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Tony Britton
Tony Britton Allan Warren.jpg
Portrait taken by Allan Warren in 1972
Anthony Edward Lowry Britton

9 June 1924
Died22 December 2019(2019-12-22) (aged 95)
Years active1952–2019
Spouse(s)Ruth Hawkins (m. 1948; divorced)
Eva Castle
(m. 1962; died 2008)
ChildrenFern Britton
Jasper Britton
Cherry (Hawkins) Britton[1]
AwardsBroadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actor
1975 The Nearly Man

Anthony Edward Lowry Britton (9 June 1924 – 22 December 2019) was an English actor. He appeared in a variety of films (including The Day of the Jackal) and television sitcoms (including Don't Wait Up and Robin's Nest

He is the father of presenter Fern Britton, scriptwriter Cherry Britton and actor Jasper Britton.

Life and career[edit]

Britton was born in a room above the Trocadero public house in Temple Street, Birmingham, Warwickshire, the son of Doris Marguerite (née Jones) and Edward Leslie Britton.[2] He attended Edgbaston Collegiate School, Birmingham and Thornbury Grammar School, Gloucestershire. During the Second World War he served in the Army and he also worked for an estate agent and in an aircraft factory. He joined an amateur dramatics group in Weston-super-Mare and then turned professional, appearing on stage at the Old Vic and with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

He appeared in numerous British films from the 1950s onwards, including Operation Amsterdam (1959), Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971) and The Day of the Jackal (1973). Britton won the Broadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actor in 1975 for The Nearly Man.

He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1977 when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews outside London's Cafe Royal.[citation needed]

From 1983 to 1990, he starred with Nigel Havers and Dinah Sheridan in the BBC sitcom Don't Wait Up, which became a highlight of his career.[3] His other sitcom appearances included ...And Mother Makes Five, Father, Dear Father and as James Nicholls in Robin's Nest.

In September 2013 Sir Jonathan Miller directed a Gala Performance of William Shakespeare's King Lear at the Old Vic in London. Britton played the Earl of Gloucester.[4]

Britton and his first wife Ruth (née Hawkins) had two children, scriptwriter Cherry Britton and TV presenter Fern Britton. Cherry was married to children's TV presenter Brian Cant. Fern is married to Phil Vickery. Britton's second wife was Danish sculptor and member of the wartime Danish resistance Eva Castle Britton (née Skytte Birkfeldt).[5] They had one son, actor Jasper Britton.

Britton died on 22 December 2019, at the age of 95.[6][7]




  1. ^ Britton, Nigel (1 July 2013). Hp Sauce My Ancestors' Legacy. AuthorHouse. ISBN 9781481797047 – via Google Books.
  2. ^ "Tony Britton Biography (1924-)". 9 June 1924. Retrieved 18 April 2014.
  3. ^ "Tony Britton death: Don't Wait Up star and father of Fern Britton dies, aged 95". The Independent. Retrieved 22 December 2019.
  4. ^ "The Old Vic | King Lear". Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 18 April 2014.
  5. ^ "Eva Castle Britton (née Skytte Birkefeldt)". National Portrait Gallery. Retrieved 22 December 2019.
  6. ^ "Actor Tony Britton dies aged 95". BBC News. 22 December 2019.
  7. ^ "Fern Britton at Twitter". Twitter. 2019. Retrieved 22 December 2019.
  8. ^ The Listener. British Broadcasting Corporation. September 1989. p. 39.
  9. ^ "Run For Your Wife". Jeffrey Holland. Retrieved 22 December 2019.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h Haroon Siddique (22 December 2019). "British actor Tony Britton dies aged 95". The Guardian.

External links[edit]