40 Facts About Bruce Forsyth


Sir Bruce Joseph Forsyth-Johnson was a British entertainer and television presenter whose career spanned more than 70 years.


Bruce Forsyth co-presented Strictly Come Dancing from 2004 to 2013.


In 2012, Guinness World Records recognised Bruce Forsyth as having the longest television career for a male entertainer.


Bruce Forsyth was born on Victoria Road in Edmonton, Middlesex, on 22 February 1928, the son of Florence Ada and John Thomas Bruce Forsyth-Johnson.


Bruce Forsyth's family owned a car repair garage and, as members of the Salvation Army, his parents played brass instruments; his mother was a singer.


Bruce Forsyth's great-grandfather Joseph Forsyth Johnson was a landscape architect who worked in multiple countries, and great-great-great-great-grandfather William Forsyth was a founder of the Royal Horticultural Society and the namesake of the plant genus Forsythia.


Shortly after he arrived, Bruce Forsyth's parents allowed him to return to London because he felt homesick.


Bruce Forsyth had made his television debut in 1939 as a child, singing and dancing on BBC talent show Come and Be Televised, broadcast from Radiolympia and introduced by Jasmine Bligh.


Bruce Forsyth's act was interrupted by national service when he was conscripted into the Royal Air Force at the age of 19, which he later reflected taught him "respect and discipline".


Bruce Forsyth hosted the show for two years, followed by a year's break, then returned for another year.


Bruce Forsyth appeared in the London production of Little Me, along with Avril Angers in 1964.


Bruce Forsyth was replaced on The Generation Game by Larry Grayson.


Bruce Forsyth remained with ITV, hosting the game show Play Your Cards Right, which was the UK version of the US original Card Sharks, from 1980 to 1987,1994 to 1999, and a brief period from 2002 to 2003, before the show was cancelled mid-run due to low ratings.


Bruce Forsyth starred in the Thames Television sitcom Slinger's Day in 1986 and 1987, a sequel to Tripper's Day which had starred Leonard Rossiter, whom Bruce Forsyth replaced in the new show.


Bruce Forsyth fronted the third version of The Price Is Right.


Bruce Forsyth celebrated his 70th birthday in 1998 and appeared in a week-long run of his one-man show at the London Palladium.


In 2000, Bruce Forsyth hosted a revived series called Tonight at the London Palladium.


In 2003, and again in 2010, Bruce Forsyth was a guest presenter on the news and satire quiz show Have I Got News for You.


Bruce Forsyth had called Paul Merton, one of the team captains on the show, to suggest himself as a guest presenter.


Bruce Forsyth co-presented Strictly Come Dancing from 2004 to 2013, formally stepping down from hosting the regular live show in April 2014.


On 7 April 2010, Bruce Forsyth became one of the first three celebrities to be subjected to the British version of the American institution of a comedy roast, on Channel 4's A Comedy Roast.


On 20 March 2010, Bruce Forsyth appeared on the autobiography-interview programme Piers Morgan's Life Stories, which was broadcast on ITV.


In 2011, Bruce Forsyth released a collection of songs on CD called These Are My Favourites.


Bruce Forsyth chose the songs for their personal and musical importance, including a duet with his granddaughter, Sophie Purdie.


On 7 June 1959 Bruce Forsyth was inducted into the elite entertainers' fraternity, the Grand Order of Water Rats, Water Rat number 566.


Bruce Forsyth repaid this favour by adding the society to his busy schedule in June 1997 and appeared at their 10th annual general meeting in Plymouth.


Bruce Forsyth was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the 1998 Birthday Honours, and Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2006 New Year Honours.


Bruce Forsyth had a bronze bust of himself unveiled at the London Palladium in May 2005.


Bruce Forsyth received a Royal Television Society Lifetime Achievement Award on 17 March 2009.


Bruce Forsyth was made a Knight Bachelor in the 2011 Birthday Honours for services to entertainment and charity.


In July 2012, Bruce Forsyth was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flame through London, as it finally reached the city on the penultimate day of the London 2012 Torch Relay.


Bruce Forsyth earned a place in the 2013 Guinness Book of World Records as the male TV entertainer having had the longest career, calling it a "wonderful surprise".


Bruce Forsyth appeared at the 2013 Glastonbury Festival on the Avalon stage, becoming the oldest performer to ever play at the festival.


In 2018 the NTAs honoured the memory of Sir Bruce Forsyth by naming an NTA award after him.


Bruce Forsyth was married to Penny Calvert from 1953 until their divorce in 1973, with whom he had three daughters named Debbie, Julie, and Laura.


Bruce Forsyth was a supporter and ambassador for the children's charity Caudwell Children, regularly appearing at many of their fundraising events.


Towards the end of his life, Bruce Forsyth suffered from ill health, which reduced his appearances in public.


On 18 August 2017, Bruce Forsyth died of bronchial pneumonia at his Wentworth Estate home in Virginia Water, aged 89.


Bruce Forsyth was cremated on 5 September 2017 in a private ceremony attended only by close family and friends.


On 18 August 2018, exactly a year after he died, Bruce Forsyth's ashes were laid to rest beneath the stage at the London Palladium in a private ceremony.