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Bernard Cribbins, British Actor Known for ‘Doctor Who,’ Is Dead at 93


Bernard Cribbins, a British actor who had roles on “Doctor Who” and “Fawlty Towers” and whose contributions to children’s programs delighted young audiences over a profession that spanned seven a long time, has died. He was 93.

In an announcement, the management and talent agency, Gavin Barker Associates, confirmed the death but didn’t say when or where he died.

Mr. Cribbins worked well into his 90s in a profession that influenced a number of the best-known comedy, drama and youngsters’s programs in Britain. He first acted on the age of 14 in his hometown, Oldham, England, just outside Manchester, in a repertory company there, starting a period of stage work that led to roles in television and film, for which he became widely known.

For 3 a long time Mr. Cribbins was repeatedly featured on “Jackanory,” a BBC children’s program wherein an actor read books to young audiences. This system, which ran between 1965 and 1996, sought to arouse an interest in reading in children.

In one in all his greater than 100 readings, of “The Wizard of Oz,” in 1970, Mr. Cribbins infused the voices of Dorothy, the Cowardly Lion, the Wizard and other characters with a full dramatic repertoire of whispers, tremors and shrieks.

When he was awarded a BAFTA Special Award in 2009, he grew serious in an interview when asked in regards to the hugely popular “Jackanory” and the way it had influenced young audiences.

“All you’ve got to do,” he said, “is look down the lens, find one child, and just talk over with that child. And also you pull them in.”

“It really works, and you think that all around the country there will likely be little kids saying, ‘Only a minute, Mum,’ they usually will likely be looking. And the stories, as I said before, were wonderful,” he said.

Mr. Cribbins was born in Oldham on Dec. 29, 1928. After his early stage profession, he narrated “The Wombles,” a Nineteen Seventies animated television program created from a series of books about underground creatures, and joined the solid of the science-fiction TV series “Doctor Who” from 2007 to 2010. He had earlier appeared in a “Doctor Who” movie, “Daleks’ Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.,” in 1966.

Within the TV series, which the producer Russell T Davies revived in 2005, Mr. Cribbins had a recurring role because the grandfather of one in all Doctor Who’s companions, Donna Noble, played by Catherine Tate. In an Instagram post on Thursday, Mr. Davies wrote that Mr. Cribbins “loved being in ‘Doctor Who.’ He said, ‘Children are calling me grandad on the street!’”

Mr. Davies wrote that Mr. Cribbins had once “turned up with a suitcase stuffed with props, just in case, including a rubber chicken.” He added, “He’d phone up and say, ‘I’ve got an idea! What if I attack a Dalek with a paintball gun?!’ Okay, Bernard, in it went!”

Mr. Cribbins also starred within the 1970 film “The Railway Children,” based on the kids’s book by Edith Nesbit. A review in The Latest York Times called it “a superbly lovely little British movie” and said Mr. Cribbins was “excellent” because the stationmaster Albert Perks in a “easy tale about three children who putter around a Yorkshire village, sharing a loving kindness learned at home.”

In 1975, Mr. Cribbins appeared in an episode of the comedy series “Fawlty Towers,” starring John Cleese because the hapless manager of a seaside hotel. Mr. Cribbins played a guest mistaken by Mr. Cleese’s character for a hotel inspector, who’s attempting to order a cheese salad for lunch and as a substitute is served an omelet.

An inventory of survivors was not immediately available. Mr. Cribbins’s wife, the actor Gillian McBarnet, died last October.

Within the interview after receiving the BAFTA award in 2009, Mr. Cribbins and his “Doctor Who” co-star Ms. Tate spoke about how quickly time had passed by during his long profession.

“I can remember a number of things with total clarity, total recall,” he said, before adding jokingly, “I’ve got stories I haven’t even considered yet.”

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