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Donald Churchill

Donald Churchill was born in November 1930 at Southall, Middlesex, the son of an engine driver on the Old Great Western Railway. He finished his education at the age of 14, after attending 13 different schools because his family moved around a great deal. His first job was office boy to a Judge. Then followed a spell on the Dartmouth Chronicle as a junior reporter, working as a mail boy at Denham Film Studios and then a “runner” for Two Cities Films. He spent his National Service in the army. On leaving, Donald joined the ROC Players in Yeovil, Somerset, followed by repertory at Worcester, Northampton, Liverpool, Windsor and Worthing. Donald married actress Pauline Yates and they had two daughters, Jemma, an actress, and Polly, a playwright. Donald died in Fuengirola, southern Spain (29th October 1991) while filming the ITV series El. C.I.D. Donald entered films and television as an actor in 1956 and started writing in 1960, and for the rest of his life successfully combined his acting and writing careers. His writing for television included some two dozen plays for the BBC and ITV; episodes of comedy and drama series and the series MOODY AND PEG (with Julia Jones); OUR MUTUAL FRIEND (adapted from Dickens with Julia Jones for the BBC); THE FLAXBOROUGH CHRONICLES (BBC); NEVER A CROSS WORD, GOODNIGHT AND GOODBLESS (in which he also starred); ECHOES (with Julia Jones for Channel 4) and MR PYE (adapted from the stories of by Mervyn Peake for Channel 4). He also wrote a number of plays for radio. Donald’s stage plays include THE DECORATOR, MOMENT OF WEAKNESS, MIXED FEELINGS (renamed THE LIES WE TELL ON FRIDAYS for the Quebecois premiere and ONCE A WEEK, ENOUGH! For the Czech premiere) and THE PERFORMING HUSBAND (renamed LOVE AND MARRIAGE for the UK Tour and YOU’VE STILL GOT ME, DARLING for the Slovak premiere). His television play THE LEFTOVERS was staged in Prague in 2001 and remained in the repertoire for five years. He also co-wrote the West End hit FRINGE BENEFITS and the popular MY FRIEND MISS FLINT with Peter Yeldham. All of Donald’s plays have been and continue to be hugely successful internationally. As an actor his film appearances included ALL AT SEA (1957), VICTIM (1961) THE WILD AFFAIR (1965). Television appearances included playing Doctor Watson in a series of ADVENTURES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES, BULLDOG BREED, EL CID, CATS EYES, BERGERAC, DON’T WAIT UP, SPOONER’S PATCH and GOODNIGHT AND GODBLESS, co-written with Joe McGrath, in which he played a TV Quiz show host who humiliated the contestants.


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Samuel French Titles by Donald Churchill