Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Peter Hawkins

Another unsung hero who almost single handedly did all the voices of the childhood television characters I grew up with and loved like Billy Bean, The Flowerpot Men, Captain Pugwash and the Daleks to name but a few. I actually wrote him a fan letter once when I was at art school in the 60's and he sent me a very nice letter back which I treasure ( if only I could find it!).

Wikipedia says -

"Born in London and a native of Brixton, Hawkins' long association with British children's television began in 1952 when he voiced both Bill and Ben, the Flower Pot Men. In 1955–1956, He voiced Big Ears & Mr. Plod from The Adventures Of Noddy. He also provided all the voices for the animated series Captain Pugwash, The Family Ness, The Adventures of Sir Prancelot, The Adventures of Tintin, and Bleep and Booster, the latter of which was a regular feature of the long-running children's magazine series Blue Peter in the 1960s and early 70s. He was also the narrator for SuperTed. Peter Hawkins also narrated Jimbo and the Jet Set.
He voiced several characters on Doctor Who in the show's early years, most notably the Daleks and the Cybermen. He was also the original voice of Zippy on Rainbow during the first year of its run (1972). Coincidently his replacement on Rainbow, Roy Skelton, also went on to voice the Daleks. Hawkins and Skelton also voiced the Cybermen in The Tenth Planet. He voiced Penfold who had a Welsh accent & Mr. McNasty who had a Scottish accent on The Pilot Dangermouse episode, The Mystery of the Lost Chord in 1979.
Hawkins was the original voice for the character of Frankie Mouse in the fourth radio episode of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, originally broadcast in March 1978.
During the 1960s, 70s and 80s Hawkins was one of the most sought after voiceovers for television and radio, being a regular face and voice around the Soho based circuit of commercial production studios, and working regularly with the likes of Patrick Allen, Edward Judd, David Tate and David Jason amongst whom he was highly respected.
Hawkins was the owner of a fine art collection, including works by Monet, Pissarro & Alfred Sisley, owned a collection of Japanese sword guards and was very keen on Japanese delicacy.
Hawkins retired from the acting profession in 1992 due to illness, which also prevented him from contributing to any DVD release of Doctor Who outside of archive footage. He died in London, aged 82, on 8 July 2006, coincidentally the same day that the 2006 season finale of Doctor Who, "Doomsday", the first to feature Daleks and Cybermen confronting each other, was transmitted.
Nicholas Briggs, the current voice of the Daleks, paid tribute to him in Doctor Who Magazine, praising him as the best Dalek voice artist, saying "...all of us who've provided Dalek voices over the last 40 years owe him a massive debt. None of us have been as good as Peter, but he supplied our inspiration. He was truly the Emperor of the Daleks."

1 comment:

Russell 'C.J.' Duffy said...

I had no idea. The first voice of the Daleks was by far the best.