British actor Michael Medwin has died in hospital in Bournemouth at the age of 96.
Best known for playing radio station boss Don Satchley in TV’s Shoestring, he was a prolific supporting player who appeared in films with Michael Caine, Sean Connery and Albert Finney.
Alongside Finney, he also produced such films as Lindsay Anderson’s If…., O Lucky Man! and Charlie Bubbles.
Born in London in 1923, he was made an OBE for services to drama in 2005.
Theatre producer David Pugh, with whom Medwin produced plays for three decades, was among the first to mark his passing.
Medwin, who trained at the Italia Conti stage school in London, made his film debut as a radio operator in 1946’s Piccadilly Incident.
In the six decades that followed, he appeared in such films as A Hill in Korea, Doctor at Large, Carry On Nurse and The Longest Day.
Often cast as cockney spivs at the start of his career, he moved on to authority figures like the doctor who treats Connery’s James Bond in 1983’s Never Say Never Again.
He also played the nephew of Albert Finney’s title character in Scrooge, despite being 12 years Finney’s senior.
As Don Satchley, Medwin would occasionally find himself at odds with Trevor Eve’s phone-in private investigator Eddie Shoestring.
Based in the West Country, the BBC TV series ran for two series spanning 21 episodes between 1979 and 1980.
“Acting was something I wanted to do, and by good fortune I found I could do it quite well,” he told The List in 2009.
The previous year he made one of his final screen appearances as a speechmaker who extols the virtues of Keira Knightley’s title character in The Duchess.