Bernard Curbins was remembered as a ‘creative genius’ by leading TV personalities.


Hildren’s TV star and entertainer Bernard Cribbens has been remembered as a “creative genius” and “legend” by those who worked with him following news of his death aged 93.

The veteran actor, who starred in Carry On Films, Doctor Who and 1970’s The Railway Children, was announced on Thursday in a statement by his agent Gavin Barker Associates.

Following the news, television industry figures, including Dr. Who showrunner Russell T. Davis and Baroness Flavella Benjamin, were among those paying tribute to the esteemed actor.

Davies wrote on Instagram that she was lucky to have known Cribbins, saying the actor “loved being on Doctor Who”, adding: “He said, ‘The kids call me Grandpa in the street. are!’

“His first day was on location with Kylie Minogue, but all eyes, even Kylie’s, were on Bernard. He brought a suitcase full of props, just in case, including a rubber chicken. joined. And what an actor. Oh, really, though, what a wonderful actor.

“We once took him to the TV Choice Awards and sent him to pick up the award himself, and the whole room gave him a standing ovation.

“It’s a beautiful memory. He’ll call and say, ‘I’ve got an idea! What if I attack a Dalek with a paintball gun?!’ Well, Bernard, go to it!

“He loved Gil with all his heart. He mentioned her in every conversation we had. A love story for the ages. I’m so lucky to have known him. Thanks for everything, my old soldier. A legend.” Departed from the world.

Born in Oldham, Cribbins was respected for his versatility and became a favorite with young audiences across the country as the narrator of The Wombles, as well as making more than 100 appearances on the children’s favourite, Jacknorry.

After appearing on stage for several years, Cribbins made his film debut in 1957’s Davy, before appearing in films with some of the biggest names in British cinema such as Two Way Stretch, She, Daleks Invasion Earth 2150 AD and the 1967 version. work in Casino Royale.

In 1972, he played barman Felix Forsyth in director Alfred Hitchcock’s thriller Frenzy, which revolved around the hunt for a serial killer in London.

He also starred in several carry-on films and had roles in TV favorites Coronation Street and the revamped Doctor Who.

He appeared regularly in the Doctor Who TV series as Wilfred Mott, the grandfather of the Doctor’s companion Donna Noble, played by Catherine Tate.

Bernard Cribbins (centre), with fellow cast members of The Railway Children (left to right) Daddy Davis, Gary Warren and Jenny Agtor, as they receive the JM for a lifetime of unforgettable work on stage, film, television and for children. Received a Berry Award. Record (Nicholas T. Ansel/PA) / PA Wire

Voyage Of The Damned, which aired on Christmas Day in 2007, saw 13.3 million people watch then-Dr. David Tennant fight to save the crew of the luxury space liner Titanic.

Curbans joined special guests in the episode including Kylie Minogue, Jeffrey Palmer, Clive Swift and Russell Tovey.

Most recently, reports suggested that he was spotted on set with Tate and Tennant for Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary celebrations.

Fellow children’s TV presenter Lady Benjamin said she had “loved” working with Cribbins in the 1980s and described him as a “creative genius” who left a “lasting legacy”.

Off-screen, Cribbins enjoyed a successful musical career and scored a number of hit records, including the 1962 comedy songs Hole in the Ground and Right Said Fred, both of which reached the top 10 in the UK singles chart.

Bernard Curbins with fellow Doctor Who cast Jon Whitfield, Barry Howard and David Tennant in a scene from Doctor Who The End of Time, Part One (Adrian Rogers/BBC) / PA Media

Hole in the Ground, about a dispute between a hole-digger in a bowler hat and a busybody, was one of the musical choices of playwright and actor Sir Noel Coward when he wrote the BBC’s Desert Island Discs in 1963. appeared on

One of the roles he is best known for is as station porter Albert Perks in The Railway Children, released in 1970.

The film adaptation of E Nesbitt’s book follows the adventures of three children who are forced to move from London to Yorkshire after their father is falsely imprisoned for selling state secrets.

The film also starred a young Jenny Agtor and famously featured the tear-jerking moment in the film’s climax when Agtor’s character cries out “Daddy, my daddy” as he rejoins the train platform. They come together.

In 2011 Cribbins received an OBE for services to drama for his long career.

Bernard Cribbins has been made an Officer of the British Empire (OBE) by the Princess Royal during an investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle. / PA Archive

A statement from Gavin Barker Associates said of Cribbins: “His career has spanned seven decades, with work as diverse as The Railway Children and The Carry On Series, to the ’60s song Right Said. Fred, a notorious guest at Fawlty Towers and narrates The Wombles.

“He worked well into his 90s, most recently appearing in Doctor Who and the Sea Babies series Old Jack’s Boat.

“He lost his wife of 66 years, Gill, last year.

There is no questioning Barnard’s contribution to British entertainment. He was unique, exemplified the best of his generation, and will be greatly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing and working with him.

(PA) during filming of The Railway Children with actresses Sally Thomsett (left) and Jenny Agtor in 1970 / PA Archive

Musical theater star Elaine Page tweeted that she was “so sad” that her “dear friend” had died.

He added: “We met on Anything Goes and have maintained our ‘friendship’ for over 33 years. A very special man of many talents.

“Funny, kind, genuine, always had a smile on his face and a laugh. One of the good guys. I’ll miss him dearly. RIP.”

Curbins other credits included the lead role in the CBB show Old Jack Boat and in the 1960s he narrated the Tufty Fluffytale series of public information films about road safety.

Sherlock and The League of Gentlemen’s Mark Gatiss paid tribute to Cribbins in a tweet, saying he was “a gifted comedian with an incredible seam of pathos and genuine heart”.