Windsor Davies, the actor and star of It Ain’t Half Hot Mum, has died at the age of 88.
Born in August 1930 in Canning Town, East London, Windsor Davies moved to his father’s home village, Nant-y-Moel in the Ogmore valley, when World War Two broke out.
Davies attended Ogmore Grammar School and then moved to Bangor where he attend the Normal College and trained to be a teacher, he then worked as a teacher and miner before enrolling on a drama course at Richmond College in 1961.
Davies’ first on-screen appearance was in the 1962 film The Pot Carriers. A range of television and film roles followed, including various parts in Dixon Of Dock Green and Z Cars between 1965 and 1974.
Created by David Croft and Jimmy Perry as the follow-up to Dad’s Army, It Ain’t Half Hot Mum ran on the BBC from 1974 to 1981 and 60 episodes. It followed the exploits of a Royal Artillery Concert Party entertaining British troops in India and Burma towards the end of World War Two.
Windsor Davies became the show’s stand-out performer, with catchphrases including “Shut up!” and the sardonic “Oh dear, how sad, never mind”. He described the show as “my saviour,” adding that it “saved me from being a great actor”.
With his series co-star Don Estelle, Davies had a number one hit single in the UK in 1975 with a version of the Whispering Grass. He also took two roles in Carry On Behind (1975) and Carry On England (1976), the latter as Sgt Major “Tiger” Bloomer.
From 1983 to 1986 he voiced the part of Sgt Major Zero in Gerry Anderson’s Terrahawks. However, perhaps eager to avoid becoming typecast, he took the role of the antique dealer Oliver Smallbridge in the television series Never The Twain, which ran between 1981 and 1991.
Davies also undertook a range of radio and voice-over work, although in 1984 he failed an audition to become the voice of the speaking clock.
His acting roles became less frequent in the 21st century, although he made appearances in the television series 2point4 Children, Casualty and My Family.
His daughter Jane Davies said he and her mother, who died in September, left a family “who will all remember them with love, laughter and gratitude”.
The couple, who were married for 62 years, had retired to France. They had five children.