Terry Scott (1927-1994) b. Watford, Hertfordshire, England.
Terry Scott was born Owen John Scott in Watford on 4 May 1927 and was educated at Watford Field Junior School then Watford Grammar School for Boys. It was whilst he was at school that he began his theatrical career, in his teens, with the Watford Amateur Dramatic Society, where he specialised in playing small comic roles. After leaving school, he studied for a career in accountancy and served with the Royal Navy during WWII.
At the end of the war, he decided to use his demobilisation gratuity to become a showbusiness manager and he began arranging shows around the seaside towns of Britain. It was during this time, at Butlin’s Camp in Skegness that he met Bill Maynard and together they performed routines together. In 1949, he teamed up with Bob Monkhouse and together they were contracted by the BBC to write and perform a radio show. Unfortunately, it sank without trace.
However, he did have more luck when he reformed his partnership with Bill Maynard and together they appeared in the TV comedy Great Scott it’s Maynard. He became even better known to TV audiences with his next venture Hugh & I, partnering Hugh Lloyd. They were to remain firm friends and re-appeared together at the end of the 60s in the sitcom The Gnomes of Dulwich.
He made his film debut as a policeman in Blue Murder at St Trinians, followed by three more roles as an officer of the law in Carry on Sergeant, Too Many Crooks and The Bridal Path. Overall, he appeared as a leading character in seven of the Carry on films, his last being Carry on Matron in 1972, by which time he had begun his most famous partnership, that with June Whitfield, first in Happy Ever After and then Terry & June, which ran for a staggering 14 years.
Terry was an ever-present on our TV screens throughout the 70s, also featuring in an advert for Curly Wurly, in which he played a schoolboy, complete with short trousers and cap! In a similar vein, he also enjoyed a hit with ‘My Brother’, a song about a naughty little brother, written by Mitch Murray and a regular request on the radio programme Junior Choice. Then in 1980, he became the voice of Penfold in the Dangermouse series of cartoons, recording over 90 episodes opposite David Jason as the voice of the intrepid mouse.
Sadly, Scott suffered from ill-health for many years and in 1979 after falling victim to a brain haemorrhage, his life was saved by a four hour operation. He returned to work but by 1985 he announced he was suffering from creeping paralysis and as a result, we often saw him in a neck brace on stage and TV.
In 1988, Terry & June was dropped from the schedules and Terry suffered a nervous breakdown although this was in reality at least partly brought on by his public confession that he had had a number of affairs during his marriage to Maggie Pollen (they had married in 1957 and had four daughters together). He also revealed he was suffering from cancer as he somewhat characteristically said “I know it would be better to give up the booze, fags and birds, but life would be so boring wouldn’t it?” Terry Scott died of cancer on July 26 1994, aged 67.
Compiled by Clive Saunders.