Actors and actresses ACTORS

Buster Merryfield

Harry "Buster" Merryfield, most famously known for his role as Uncle Albert in Only Fools and Horses, was born in Battersea, London in 1920.

Merryfield was given the name "Buster" by his grandfather, as he weighed 9 pounds at birth, and it stuck throughout his entire life. Infact he refused to divulge his real name to anyone during his lifetime and it only became open knowledge after his death in 1999. 

He prided himself on his fitness and followed a strict fitness regime of daily press-ups and swimming sessions. And unlike his pipe-smoking, rum-drinking character Uncle Albert, Merryfield was a teetotal non-smoker his entire life. 

He was also a child boxing star back in the 1930s. He was British schoolboy champion in 1936 and Southern Command arm champion in 1945. He was also a keen amateur football player and Millwall fan and regularly attended their games at The Den.

Merryfield could also play the piano by ear but could not read music. And in real life was also a fan of disco dancing!

As well as his role in Only Fools and Horses, Merryfield appeared in The Citadel, Shroud for a Nightingale and Strangers and Brothers. 

Before becoming a professional actor he was a keen amateur actor and director. His productions of John Osborne's The Entertainer (1966), The World - My Canvas (1968) by Ruth Dixon and A View from the Bride (1969) by Arthur Miller, for the now defunct amateur theatre group The Characters, won Best Play at the Woking Drama Festival in 1966, 1968 and 1969 respectively. He also won the Best Actor trophy for his roles in The Entertainer (1966) and The World–My Canvas (1968). 

Before his professional career in acting he worked as a bank manager at the Westminster Bank (later NatWest) for nearly forty years, although his banking career was interrrupted by his war service. 

In contrast to his most famous character, Merryfield spent the war in the army where his physique resulted in him being made a PT and jungle warfare instructor. Awarded an Emergency Commission in the Royal Artillery on 13 March 1942, Merryfield was promoted to the rank of Second Lieutenant (228987). It was during the war that he first discovered his love of acting when he served as an entertainments officer, putting on shows for the other troops.

After the war, he married and with his wife expecting a daughter, he opted to return to his job at the bank


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Do You Remember Buster Merryfield?

Do You Remember Buster Merryfield?