Play: Run For Your Wife: Criterion Theatre, London, 1984
Born in 1923 in Oldham, Lancashire, Eric Sykes CBE was an English radio, stage, television and film writer, comedian, actor, and director whose performing career spanned more than 50 years. He frequently wrote for and performed with many other leading comedy performers and writers of the period, including Tony Hancock, Spike Milligan, Tommy Cooper and Peter Sellers.
Sykes first came to prominence through his many radio credits as a writer and actor in the 1950s, most notably through his collaboration on The Goon Show scripts. He became a TV star in his own right in the early 1960s when he appeared with Hatti Jacques in a number of popular BBC comedy television series including the long running Sykes. Despite being profoundly deaf wearing his glasses with no lenses as a bone conducting hearing aid, Sykes continued to act after Jacques’ death in 1980 and I was lucky enough to see him on stage star in the Ray Cooney penned highly successful farce Run For Your Wife in 1984 where Sykes’ timing, and masterly slapstick where on display for the whole audience to enjoy.
Sykes, the memorable comic actor and writer passed away in July 2012.