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Barry Gosney

Blue Collar Rat

Water Rat Number 718 - initiated into the Order 28th January 1979.

Proposer: Len Lowe. Seconder: Don Ross

Barry's versatility provided him with many opportunities to appear with equal success in films, TV and the theatre. From the days of 'Dixon of Dock Green' and the 'Carry On' films to 'Teahouse of the August Moon' on the West End stage.

Barry began his career at the age of 7 when he went to the Joan Morris School of Dancing, in his home town of Woking, where he excelled at Tap dancing and became known as 'Twinkletoes Gosney' He won a scholarship to the Cone Ripman School of Acting.

In 1938 he got his first professional job at the Duke of York's Theatre, London, in 'The Boy Who Lost His Temper'. This was followed in 1939 when he appeared as Ivor Novello's son in 'The Dancing Years' a part which he outgrew!

During the Second World War Barry joined the Royal Navy and was drafted to a destroyer based at Malta. Whilst on service he was engaged by Arthur Lane to appear in his Forces show 'Tokyo Express', which toured throughout Britain, Europe and Canada. After the war Barry continued to work for Arthur Lane in 'Calypso' at the Playhouse Theatre, London. Then came a period in rep. It was whilst at the Amersham Rep that he met and married his first wife Jennifer Walton with whom he had two children, Jamie & Clare.

Many West End Shows followed including 'Harmony Close', 'For Amusement Only' and 'Come Spy With Me' with brother Water Rat Danny La Rue.

Barry directed and acted for Peter Haddon and Arthur Lane at the Wimbledon Theatre and spent many years as regular Dame in the Theatre Royal, Windsor, pantomimes. He also worked as Dame for Paul Elliott.

Barrie's career has lead him into countless film and television productions. It was whilst on a 'Basil Brush' series that he met his second wife, Jacqueline Clarke, and a partnership in light entertainment, Music Hall, National and International tours and West End shows ensued all thanks to Ray Cooney and Derek Nimmo. Barry also spent many happy productions at The Mill at Sonning.

His TV credits included four series of the Harry Hill Show and with Al Murray in 'Time Gentlemen Please'. At the age of 80 he found himself playing Ken Ford, the joy of sex man, in the Harry Hill's TV Burp. Barry's last stage appearance was in a charity show at the Mill at Sonning in 2007, where with the smell of greasepaint and the roar of the crowd he made his final bow.
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