Frank Thornton, comic actor has died at the age of 92.
In the early 1950’s, Thornton began his acting career achieving great success in both TV, and film in the subsequent twenty years.
Thornton appeared in a number of guest roles alongside stars such as Tony Hancock, Dickie Henderson, Benny Hill, Sid James, Frankie Howerd, Morecambe & Wise, and many more.
Thornton is best known for his role as stern, pompous floor-walker Captain Stephen Peacock in the hit comedy series Are You Being Served? the pilot of which was aired in 1972, and ran for ten successful series before ending in 1985. The show was revived in the early 1990’s spin-off Grace & Favour.
Actor Nicholas Smith, who played Head of Department Cuthbert Rumbold in the series, and it’s spin-off in now the only surviving original cast member.
He also was well known for his role as Herbert ‘Truly’ Truelove in the long running comedy series Last Of The Summer Wine which began in 1973, and ended in 2010. Thornton joined the cast for the 18th series of the show in 1997, and remained until the shows final 31st series.
Thornton appeared in a variety of sitcoms, sketch shows, dramas, and films. His notable comedy roles included appearances in Steptoe And Son, The Goodies, No Sex Please – We’re British, Sykes, Thirty Minutes Worth, Carry On Screaming, The Kenny Everett Television Show, The Bed Sitting Room, Katy Brand’s Big Ass Show, Dad’s Army, and HMS Paradise.
His final role was a cameo in Ray Cooney’s small budget feature film Run For Your Wife which opened last month in limited release across the UK.
Thornton was born in London on the 15th of January in 1921, and is survived by his wife of 67 years, Beryl, daughter Jane, and six grandchildren. He died peacefully in his sleep this past Saturday.
David Daly, Thornton’s agent told the BBC: “I have been Frank’s agent since 1986 and he has been the most wonderful client as well as being a great friend. He will be sorely missed.”
The information aboved was provided by The British Comedy Guide.