John Quarmby

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John Quarmby (18 June 1929 –5 April 2019) was an English character actor.

Character actor actor who predominantly plays unusual or eccentric characters

A character actor or character actress is a supporting actor who plays unusual, interesting, or eccentric characters. The term, often contrasted with that of leading actor, is somewhat abstract and open to interpretation. In a literal sense, all actors can be considered character actors since they all play "characters", but in the usual sense it is an actor who plays a distinctive and important supporting role.

Quarmby was born in Liverpool and after two years' national service in the RAF joined RADA in 1949. Repertory work dominated the first twenty years of his career, although he began appearing in television in 1956.

Quarmby played a variety of roles from the 1960s to the 1990s appearing in many long-running drama series such as Z-Cars , Softly, Softly , Juliet Bravo and Howards' Way . He also appeared in the 1982 television film The Scarlet Pimpernel . He appeared as a prison officer in Porridge in an episode entitled "The Hustler" (1974). He played the role of Mr Carnegie, the Health Inspector in the Fawlty Towers episode "Basil the Rat" (1979) and Henry Tobias (the newspaper editor) in K-9 and Company .

<i>Z-Cars</i> British television drama series

Z-Cars or Z Cars is a British television drama series centred on the work of mobile uniformed police in the fictional town of Newtown, based on Kirkby, Lancashire. Produced by the BBC, it debuted in January 1962 and ran until September 1978.

<i>Softly, Softly</i> (TV series) television series

Softly, Softly is a British television drama series, produced by the BBC and screened on BBC 1 from January 1966. It was created as a spin-off from the series Z-Cars which ended its fifth series run in December 1965. The series took its name from the proverb "Softly, softly, catchee monkey", the motto of Lancashire Constabulary Training School.

<i>Juliet Bravo</i> television series

Juliet Bravo is a British television police procedural drama series, first broadcast on 30 August 1980, that ran for six series and a total of 88 episodes on BBC1. The theme of the series concerned a female police inspector who took over control of a police station in the fictional town of Hartley in Lancashire. The lead role of Inspector Jean Darblay was initially played by Stephanie Turner, but after the third series, she was replaced by Anna Carteret in the role of Inspector Kate Longton. Carteret remained with the series until its demise in 1985.

Partial filmography

YearTitleRoleNotes
1960 Scotland Yard Plain Clothes Man1 Episode ("Night Beat")
1967 Z-Cars Station Sergeant1 Episode ("I Don't Want Evidence")
1974 Fall of Eagles Lamsdorf1 Episode ("Dearest Nicky)
Porridge Prison Officer1 Episode ("The Hustler")
1979 Fawlty Towers Mr. Carnegie 1 Episode ("Basil the Rat")
1981 K-9 and Company Henry TobiasFilm
1982 The Scarlet Pimpernel PonceauFilm
1983 Storyboard Dr Slade1 Pilot Episode ("Mr Palfrey of Westminster: The Traitor")
Juliet Bravo Solicitor1 Episode ("Mates")
1984 A Christmas Carol Mr HackingFilm
1985 Thirteen at Dinner Sir Montague's ButlerFilm
1995 Restoration The ChancellorFilm


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