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James Bate (actor)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

James Bate
Anthony Bate

(1945-04-10)10 April 1945
Died19 May 1992(1992-05-19) (aged 47)[1]
Years active1971–1992

James Bate (10 April 1945 – 19 May 1992) was a British actor of television, film and stage, who was best known for playing David Allman in the ITV crime thriller series Sleuth.

Early life

Bate was born into a working class family, Bate was raised along with his brothers in a two-bedroomed apartment in the London Borough of Islington by his father who was a steel worker and his mother who was a midwife. In the late 1950s he was living with his family in Whitley Bay, Northumberland. Tony as he was known became an excellent guitarist and leader of a well respected local beat group, "The Strangers" who expanded with the addition of a singer into "The Sixteen Strings" and made a record before disbanding when Anthony [Tony] left for college.

James was his stage name. He was named Anthony and chose the acting name of James as there was another actor called Anthony Bate.

He initially attended the Royal College of Art in London having initially planned to pursue a career as a painter, but in the mid–1960s he decided to follow his real aspiration to become an actor, and began attending the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.


In the early–1970s Bate, now in his mid-twenties, graduated from RADA and began his career as a professional actor on stage with the National Theatre of London, appearing in productions of Othello and The Taming of the Shrew. In 1972 Bate made his screen debut playing Arnold Haithwaite in two episodes of The Intruder. He then went on to make major appearances as Corporal Ernest Bright in six episodes of The Regiment (1973) and Sammy Fenwick in the television miniseries The Stars Look Down (1975).

After appearing in various television shows including ITV Playhouse, Thriller (1 episode, 1974), and When the Boat Comes In, Bate struck gold when he was cast in the leading role of international spy David Allman in the ITV crime thriller series Sleuth, playing the role for four series between 1977 and 1980, receiving a BAFTA Award-nomination in 1978 for the role. The series spiraled Bate into fame and he went on to become a highly well-received television star.

After finding fame with Sleuth, Bate played Mark Warrington in all but one of the episodes of the hit television series The Spoils of War (1980–1981) and appearing as Amyand in the Doctor Who serial "Planet of Fire" and as Malcolm Hallwood in the television comedy-drama Auf Wiedersehen, Pet series 2.[2]

Bate's final screen role before he succumbed to cancer was as Stonker in one episode of Spender opposite Jimmy Nail. During 1992 he continued to appear onstage, appearing in the Royal Court Theatre's productions of Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera, with the latter being his last ever acting appearance.


Bate, who had been suffering from an undisclosed form of cancer, died on 19 May 1992 at the age of 47, while undergoing surgery for the disease.

Partial filmography

  • Si può essere più bastardi dell'ispettore Cliff? (1973)
  • Winterspelt (1979) - Sänger


  1. ^ Doctor Who Magazine - 202 said he died on 19 May 1993 and also said Alan Wells died on 18 April 1993 (hence the confusion with the dates). Then in the next issue the editors apologised and said Bate in fact died in 1992. Also, his death was registered in May 1992.
  2. ^ "Doctor Who Guide: James Bate". Doctor Who Guide. 5 March 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013.

External links

James Bate at IMDb

This page was last edited on 30 January 2021, at 20:13
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