Johnny Briggs


Real name: Johnny Briggs
Born:
5 September 1935, Battersea, South London
Married:

  1. Caroline Sinclair, 1961 (div: 1975)
  2. Christine Allsop, 1975

Children:

  1. Mark b: 1963 (m: Carole)
  2. Karen b: 1966 (m: Carole)
  3. Jennifer Louise b: 1978 (m: Christine)
  4. Michael Laurence b: 1980 (m: Christine)
  5. Stephanie Elisabeth b: 1982 (m: Christine)
  6. Anthony Stacey (m: Christine)

Contact: c/o Marina Martin Associates


Played:

  1. Van driver (1972)
  2. Mike Baldwin (11 October 1976 - )

Johnny Briggs was born in Battersea, South London on 5 September 1935 to Ernest and Rose Briggs. He was the eldest of two children, having a sister Barbara. During the war he was evacuated to Guildford, Surrey before living with his uncle in Winsford, Cheshire. As a child, Johnny sang in the church choir as a boy soprano. After the war, Johnny returned to London and lived in Collier's Wood and at the age of 12 in 1947 he auditioned for and won a scholarship to the Italia Conti Stage Academy alongside famous names such as Nannette Newman, Millicent Martin and Anthony Newley.

His professional debut was at the age of 12 when he played the boy soprano in the Italian Opera Company in London. The following year, 1948 saw Johnny in the film Quartet in which he appeared alongside George Cole. Four years later he played Skinny in the first X rated movie, Cosh Boy in which his co-star was Joan Collins and the following year he performed on stage in Sauce Tartar with Audrey Hepburn. Other stage work includes La Boheme, Tosca and Rigoletto. He then became a stage hand at The Windmill Theatre but soon became a spotlight operator.

Johnny served his two years national service in 1953 with the Royal Tank Regiment where he worked as a driving instructor and a gunner. On returning from Germany he discovered his sister Barbara had died of a brain haemorrhage on 15 November 1955 at the age of 15 so he took a break from acting and stayed with his heartbroken family. He returned to the theatre at The High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire's repertory company. Other stage work includes the plays Dial M For Murder, Boeing Boeing, Wait Until Dark, Doctor In The House, The Kitchen and Parcel Post.

In 1960 he made his television debut alongside John Thaw and Judy Cornwell in the Granada Television drama The Younger Generation. More films followed including Sink The Bismark and No Honestly and television roles in Z Cars, The Persuaders, No Honestly, Thick As Thieves, Love Thy Neighbour, My Wife Next Door, The Avengers, Private Eye, The Saint, Dangerman and The Planemakers. His big television break came in 1964 when he began two years playing Detective Sergeant Russell in No Hiding Place. In 1971 he appeared in Crimes of Passion and 1972 he played a lorry driver in Coronation Street. In 1975 he played taxi boss Clifford Leyton in Crossroads.

In a highly successful film career Johnny has worked with many of the top actors of the world. In 1960 he appeared in Dr In Love, alongside Leslie Phillips, played Leslie Smith in Light Up The Sky, alongside Tommy Steele, Benny Hill and Dick Emery and as Nolan in The Bulldog Breed alongside Norman Wisdom. In 1962 he played Dai in The Wild and The Willing and appeared alongside Dirk Bogarde as Whatley in HSM Defiant. The following year saw Johnny as a teddy boy in A Stick In Time, which also starred Ian McShane and as the boyfriend in The Leather Boys, alongside Denholm Elliott. In 1964 he played Lt. Jones in Squadron 633 and as Pablo in The Devil Ship Pirates. The following year saw Johnny performed alongside Morecambe and Wise in the film The Intelligence Man. In 1970 he appeared in the films The Last Escape and Perfect Friday working with Ursula Andress. In 1972 he was in the film version of the television show Bless This House with Sid James and Diana Coupland, appeared in The Best Pair of Legs In The Business and played Malcolm in Au Pair Girls, which also starred Gabrielle Drake. He also appeared in the films Love Thy Neighbour and Man About The House with actors Youtha Joyce, Brian Murphy, Richard O'Sullivan, Paula Wilcox, Sally Thomsett, Rodolph Walker and Jack Smethurst. He played Loman in the film Secrets of A Door To Door Salesman and has performed in three Carry On films; England, Behind and Up The Khyber alongside actors Kenneth Williams, Joan Simms, Kenneth Connor, Windsor Davies, Sherrie Hewson, Sid James and Roy Castle.

Johnny made his Coronation Street debut as Mike Baldwin on 11 October 1976 and has spent over 23 years with the show. Johnny's mother Rose died from leukaemia in 1975 and his father Ernest died at the age of 72 in 1981. Johnny married his first wife, Caroline Sinclair in 1961 at St Mary's Church, Swansea and their children followed, Mark was born in 1963 and Karen was born in 1966. The couple divorced in 1975. He married his second wife, school teacher Christine Allsop in 1975 in Catterick, North Yorkshire and they have four children; Jennifer Louise, born in 1978, Michael Lawrence, born in 1980, Stephanie Elizabeth, born in 1982 and Anthony Stacey, their youngest. Christine and Johnny separated in 1986 after she discovered he had holidayed with a 21 year old air hostess but later the couple were reconciled.

Johnny and his family live in Stourbridge, Worcester and have a flat in Salford Quays, Manchester and a house in Florida, USA. Johnny is a keep golfer although his sexist opinions against women playing the game caused him embarrassment in 1997.

 

TV appearances include:
No Hiding Place (1959) as DS Russell; The Plane Makers, Department S, Private Eye, Softly Softly, Devil's Disciple, The Man With The Power, Do Me No Favours, Mogul, The Persuaders, Love Thy Neighbour, Man About the House (Thames, 1974) as Milkman; My Wife Next Door, Thick as Thieves, No Honestly and Yus My Dear

Film appearances include:
Second Fiddle (1957) as Jimmy; The Bulldog Breed (1960) as Johnny Nolan; Light Up the Sky! (1960) as Leslie Smith; The Wind of Change (1961); The Wild and the Willing, (1962) as Dai; Damn the Defiant! (1962) as Wheatley; The Leather Boys (1963) as Boyfriend; A Stitch in Time, (1963) as Teddy Boy; 633 Squadron (1964) as Lt Jones; The Devil-Ship Pirates (1964) as Pablo; The Intelligence Men (1965) as Boy in cinema; Carry On Up the Khyber (1968) as Sporran Soldier; The Last Escape (1970) as Corporal O'Connell; Perfect Friday (1970) as Taxi Driver; Au Pair Girls (1972) as Malcolm; The Best Pair of Legs in the Business (1972); Bless This House (1972) as open truck driver; Secrets of a Door-to-Door Salesman (1973) as Loman; Carry On Behind (1975) as Plasterer; Carry On England (1976) as Melly's driver


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