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Paying tribute to the late great Nicholas Parsons

By: stagedoorscribbler - October 12, 2020

Nicholas Parsons. Photographed in November 2019 shortly after his 96th birthday by Hattie Miles

What a joy it was hearing BBC Radio 4’s tribute to the late, great broadcasting legend, Nicholas Parsons on Saturday - the day that would have been his 97th birthday.
When Nicholas died in January this year it seemed somehow unbelievable that he was no longer with us. After a career that started in the 1940s and 50s  he just kept on keeping on: bright, sharp and relevant right up until the end.
As an actor, comedian, game show host and radio presenter he was unique and appeared to be indestructible. He was working until just weeks before his death. Originally trained as an engineer, his stage career saw him rise to fame as a straight man to 60s comedian Arthur Haynes. He would go on to the  host hugely successful Tv game show Sale of the Century, appear in  countless stage  productions including a star turn as the narrator in The Rocky Horror Show.
But perhaps he is best remembered by a contemporary audience as the long-running host of the BBC Radio 4 panel-game Just a Minute - a show which he  chaired for more than 50 years.
Saturday’s tribute covered all this and more with memories  and analysis of Nicholas’s talents from Paul Merton, Sheila Hancock, Gyles Brandreth, Adrian Edmondson, Syd Little, Ian Krankie, Ian Macmillan and many more.
Note: The picture I have chosen to accompany this article was taken on the occasion of Nicholas’s final stage appearance. It was taken in November last year a few weeks after his 96th birthday.