Paul Shane (born George Frederick Speight; 19 June 1940 – 16 May 2013) was a British actor and comedian. He was known for his television work, in particular playing Ted Bovis in Hi-de-Hi!, a 1980s BBC sitcom.[1]

Paul Shane
Paul Shane.jpg
Shane in 2011
George Frederick Speight

(1940-06-19)19 June 1940
Died16 May 2013(2013-05-16) (aged 72)
OccupationActor, comedian
Years active1972–2013
Dorothy Shortt
(m. 1961; died 2001)

Early life and careerEdit

Shane was born on 19 June 1940 in Thrybergh, near Rotherham, in the West Riding of Yorkshire.[2] After leaving school in 1955, he was a miner at Silverwood Colliery until he suffered double herniated discs after slipping on soap in the pithead baths in 1967, being pensioned from the coal mines as a result. Two years later he became a professional entertainer. He already had ten years' experience as a part-time entertainer in pubs and clubs in south Yorkshire.[citation needed]

His first appearance, as a singer, was at the Grafton pub — now demolished — in St Ann's Road, Rotherham. His first club booking was at St Ann's Club in Rotherham, for 30 shillings. His transformation from singer to comedian was gradual, starting with his version of "Green, Green Grass of Home", which was straight at first, but ultimately became a send-up of the version by Tom Jones.[citation needed]

Hi-de-Hi and You Rang, M'Lord?Edit

Shane played small parts and made guest appearances in television series throughout the 1970s. In May 1979, the comedy writer Jimmy Perry spotted Shane playing Frank Roper in an episode of Coronation Street and offered him the part of Ted Bovis in his new holiday-camp sitcom Hi-de-Hi!. The series ran from 1980 until 1988, when Perry and his co-writer David Croft wrote the pilot of You Rang, M'Lord? and invited Shane to play Alf Stokes. That show ran until 1993.

In 1991, Shane was given his own show, Very Big Very Soon, which ran for one series.

Later careerEdit

Shane's performance of "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling" on Pebble Mill at One in 1996 was voted the 72nd-funniest moment on British television in an opinion poll on Channel 4 in 2004. [3][4]

Between 1995 and 1997, Shane played Jack Skinner in two series of Oh, Doctor Beeching!. Subsequently, he appeared most frequently in theatre, though he also had guest spots in Holby City and Emmerdale.

Shane also appeared in variety theatre in towns including Blackpool in 2006,[5] and in pantomime in Jack and the Beanstalk in 2008.[6] In 2008, he was in an episode of the ITV drama series A Touch of Frost, playing boatsman "Diesel Bob".

He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1981, when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews in London's Covent Garden.[citation needed]

Personal lifeEdit

Shane was married to Dorothy Shortt (Born 28 February 1943) from 1961 until her death on 4 April 2001 aged 58.[7][8] They had three daughters.

On 1 April 1984, he was inducted into the Grand Order of Water Rats.[9]

Health and deathEdit

In May 2009, Shane was admitted to the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield for heart surgery and made a full recovery.[10]

Following another short period of ill-health, he died on 16 May 2013 at a hospice in Rotherham, aged 72. His three daughters and six grandchildren survived him.[11] His funeral was at Rotherham Minster; the mourners included former colleagues from Hi-de-Hi!.

Television rolesEdit


Year Title Role Details
1979–1980 Turtle's Progress Mashcan 1 Episode
1980 Sounding Brass Gray 3 Episodes
19801988 Hi-de-Hi! Ted Bovis Main Cast
1986 Super Gran Sid Scouse Guest Star
(Christmas Special - Super Gran and the World's Worse Circus)
19881993 You Rang, M'Lord? Alf Stokes Main Cast
1991 Very Big Very Soon Harry James 4 Episodes
1995–1997 Oh, Doctor Beeching! Jack Skinner Main Cast
1995 ChuckleVision Perry Champagne Guest Star
(Episode - My Lucky Number's 9)
1996 New Voices Ernie Guest Star
(Episode - Two Minutes)


Year Title Role Details
1982 Muck and Brass Dennis Catto Guest Star
(Episode - Our Green and Pleasant Land)
2000 Doctors Bill Joseph 4 Episodes
2000–2004 Holby City Stan Ashley 13 Episodes
2004 Emmerdale Solomon Dingle 8 Episodes
2008 A Touch of Frost Diesel Bob Guest Star
(Episode - In the Public Interest)

Film rolesEdit


  1. ^ Jeffries, Stuart (17 May 2013). "Guardian: Paul Shane obituary". The Guardian.
  2. ^ "Paul Shane". Retrieved 18 January 2010.
  3. ^ "Channel4 – 100 Greatest FUNNY MOMENTS". Archived from the original on 12 February 2008. Retrieved 26 November 2007.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  4. ^ "paul shane pebble mill you've lost that loving feeling the whole song". YouTube. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021. Retrieved 12 May 2021.
  5. ^ "The Two O'Clock Show at the Grand Theatre Blackpool – Starring Paul Shane, Andy Eastwood, The Patton Brothers..." Retrieved 18 January 2010.
  6. ^ "Panto Paul Shane to Trott up the beanstalk". The Star. Retrieved 18 January 2010.
  7. ^ England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007
  8. ^ "Paul Shane's Grave - Famous Graves". YouTube.
  9. ^ "Biography of a Water Rat". Retrieved 18 April 2017.
  10. ^ "Comedy star Paul Shane to have bypass operation". Sheffield Telegraph. Archived from the original on 29 May 2009. Retrieved 18 January 2010.
  11. ^ "Hi-de-Hi! actor Paul Shane dies". BBC News. 16 May 2013. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
  12. ^ soundtrack to the album of the same title by Chris Rea
  13. ^ "Paul Shane profile at AllMovie". Retrieved 18 January 2010.

External linksEdit