Tuesday 5 December 2017

Arnold Ridley: This Is Your Life

It's time to dip once again into the archives of the classic British television show, This Is Your Life. Today's we're going way back over 41 years to 1976 and we join Eamonn Andrews as he surprises a legend of British theatre and comedy, the wonderful Arnold Ridley. Now I know this is a Carry On blog and Arnold's role in the series is very small, but this show is such a joy I just couldn't resist blogging it.

Arnold, best known as both the author of the play The Ghost Train, and latterly as Private Godfrey in the classic BBC sitcom, Dad's Army, did of course play a cameo role in Carry On Girls in 1973. Appearing in the very first scene at a council meeting with Sid James, Kenneth Connor, Marianne Stone and June Whitfield, Arnold has very little to do but it is always a lovely surprise to see him.

Arnold played the delightful Godfrey for the full run of Dad's Army between 1968 and 1977 and it was really this series that made his name and provided his lasting legacy. The show is a joy and sees most of his Dad's Army colleagues come together to share his tribute. Arthur Lowe, John Le Mesurier (of course once married to Hattie Jacques), Bill Pertwee, Clive Dunn and recent Carry On Behind star Ian Lavender are all present and correct.

Dad's Army marked the end of his screen career however Arnold would outlive several of his colleagues, despite being by far the oldest. He passed away at the age of 88 in March 1984 at the home for retired actors, Denville Hall.

Enjoy his wonderful tribute:

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