Born: July 2, 1920; Died: September 23, 2013.
Annette Kerr, who has died aged 93, was a Scots-born actress whose television roles included parts in sitcoms One Foot In The Grave and 2.4 Children.
Kerr, who was born in Elderslie in Renfrewshire, enjoyed a prolific career on stage and screen although the light of celebrity shone on her most brightly after it was revealed she was, perhaps astonishingly, the lady to whom Kenneth Williams proposed marriage.
After the pair met in rep theatre in Newquay in 1949, they were almost inseparable. And while Williams most certainly did not love women in the Biblical sense, he revealed he loved Kerr's intellect, her tastes in literature, history, philosophy and humour.
In his letters, he addressed her as 'My dearest Mentor' and they included such endearments as "O many congratulations on your attractive dark head".
He proposed to Kerr in 1961, and suggested living together just over a year later. She adored her friend, but not enough to become a 'beard', and certainly not enough to endure Williams' flights of fancy, fastidiousness and fickleness towards friends.
She turned him down, using her underwear as a dramatic device, claiming the very sight of her smalls would offend. And she added: "You know how you loathe people when you see them often."
Young Catherine Annette Kerr Peacock could never have imagined meeting the likes of Kenneth Williams, but she did dream of a career in acting.
The family moved from Renfrewshire to Watford in the late 1940s, after her father, David, who had been blinded during the Great War, trained as a physiotherapist and took up a post at Watford General Hospital.
Kerr was a precocious talent, making her stage debut at the Watford Palace Theatre while still at school, a venue she would return to in repertory seasons in 1953 and 1955.
She trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama, interrupted by the Blitz, and went on to join touring rep theatre, appearing in a range of comedies and thrillers in the 1950s, appearing alongside other young stars such as Sheila Hancock. Becoming defined by her ability to look concerned (she played a series of nurses during her career) Kerr also appeared alongside Sean Connery in Scotty Brown's Bridge.
Later, she starred opposite a young Gary Oldman in a revival of Ben Travers's Thark at the Theatre Royal, York, in 1979.
Television called in 1961 with ITV's 15-minute soap Home Tonight, but it was the stage where Kerr was allowed to shine most, alongside chums such as Irene Handl and Alfred Marks in Alan Bennett's Habeas Corpus in 1975. And now living in West London, she found herself rather conveniently in the West End for a year with The Mousetrap.
In later years, she enjoyed a succession of older woman roles in TV sitcoms, proving she could provide both laughs and pathos. In later life she became a resident at the actors' retirement home, Denville Hall, where she died.
She is survived by a brother, three nephews and three nieces.
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