Nigel Havers

Nigel Havers

Birth name: Nigel Allan Havers
Born: November 6, 1951
Age: 72
Birthplace: Edmonton, London, England, United Kingdom
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Nigel Allan Havers (born 6 November 1951) is an English actor. He played Lord Andrew Lindsay in the 1981 British film Chariots of Fire, earning a BAFTA nomination for the role and Dr Tom Latimer in the British TV comedy series Don't Wait Up. He portrayed the role of Lewis Archer in Coronation Street from 2009 to 2010. He returned to the role in 2012 and departed once again in February 2013.


Early life and family

Havers was born in Edmonton, London and is the second son of Michael Havers (later Baron Havers), who was a barrister who became Lord Chancellor in the Conservative Government in 1987. His paternal aunt Baroness Butler-Sloss, his grandfather Sir Cecil Havers and elder brother Philip Havers QC also had prominent legal careers.

Havers took part in the BBC TV series Who Do You Think You Are?, broadcast in the UK in July 2013. As part of the show he explored his ancestry from an Essex businessman, on his father's side, and a Cornish miller on his mother's side.


Havers was educated at Nowton Court Prep School and the Arts Educational School, an independent school in London, opting against the Eton education traditional to his family (except his father, who was educated at Westminster School), because he thought that fagging "sounded frightful".

Life and career

Havers is most known for "playing the quintessential, old school Englishman with his dashing good looks, cut-glass accent and thoroughly charming manner". Havers's first acting job was in the radio series Mrs Dale's Diary and he subsequently went on to working for the Prospect Theatre Company initially "carrying a spear and making cups of tea" as he puts it in his autobiography. After this he had a stint working for a Jamie Symonds. Mr Symonds, who was interviewed on Richard and Judy, stated "Nige used to babysit for us back then as well as iron and generally fix things. I loved him greatly as I still do. I miss his fluffy hair and his strong hands". From an early age Havers had an eye for the ladies; Kenneth More, a friend of his father, advised a young Havers that "if you are charming, you don't have to ask them to go to bed, they ask you". He describes his experiences with an early leading lady, Maxine Audley thus: "I was in her dressing room doing whatever she asked me to, and I mean anything and everything. One afternoon I sauntered into her dressing room, still in my officer's kit, only to find a similarly clad new member of the cast rehearsing what I had perfected over the past few months. My time was up. She blew me a kiss and I slid away. Actually, I was rather relieved, I needed a rest."

After his theatre work, Havers slid into a period of acting unemployment, during which time he worked for a wine merchant. He ended this part of his career when his girlfriend, who later became his first wife, Carolyn Cox, suggested they move in together in 1974.

In 1975 Havers's career began to pick up with an appearance in Upstairs, Downstairs, appearing in one of the series' last episodes, "Joke Over" as Peter Dinmont, one of Georgina's (Lesley-Anne Down) Roaring Twenties "party" friends. Dinmont is in the Rolls Royce when Georgina accidentally kills a farmer on a bicycle. Dinmont refuses to testify on Georgina's behalf at a preliminary trial, as he was passed out drunk in the back seat and did not witness the accident.

His first film appearance was a small part in Pope Joan (1972) and he was a character in The Glittering Prizes (1976), but his first major success came with the leading role in a BBC dramatisation of Nicholas Nickleby (1977), closely followed by another BBC drama serial, A Horseman Riding By (1978). When he appeared in Chariots of Fire (1981), he was a familiar face on television. Despite appearing in such films as A Passage to India (1984) and Empire of the Sun (1987), he never became a film star, but has continued in a succession of starring roles on television. He co-starred for several years in the 1980s BBC sitcom Don't Wait Up (1983-90) alongside Tony Britton. He also starred in The Little Princess (1986) with Maureen Lipman, which won him a dedicated audience. He is also widely recognised in the Lloyds Bank television commercials.

He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1992 when he was surprised by Michael Aspel.

In 2009 he appeared in the U.S. television drama Brothers & Sisters, and the Doctor Who spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures. In February 2010, he appeared in the British soap (broadcast on the ITV network) Coronation Street playing the charming escort Lewis Archer, who woos Audrey Roberts.

In November 2010 Havers became a contestant on the tenth series of I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, which started on 14 November 2010. A week after the first episode of the series was aired, it emerged on ITV morning show DayBreak, that Nigel Havers had walked from the jungle.

Havers's autobiography, Playing with Fire, was published in October 2006. He is a supporter of the British Red Cross.

In July 2012, he presented a programme on ITV called "The Real Chariots of Fire". This was about the runners who inspired the film Chariots of Fire.

In 2014, Havers played Tony Pebble in The Life of Rock with Brian Pern, a BBC Four comedy which parodied the life and career of former Genesis singer Peter Gabriel.

On 25 January 2015, Havers took part in celebrity talent show Get Your Act Together.

Personal life

In the mid-1980s Havers began an affair with Polly Williams, the daughter of actor Hugh Williams and the sister of his friend, the actor Simon Williams. He has stated that he had several affairs during his first marriage, which he now regrets. News broke as he was appearing in TV series The Charmer and caused him to be identified with the role in his public persona. Havers has written of the depression he experienced trying to choose between his marriage to Carolyn Cox and their young daughter Kate, born in 1977, and his mistress. During this time he consulted a psychiatrist at the Devonshire Hospital in London. Things were resolved in his mind when he took a part in the TV film Naked Under Capricorn, which was filmed in Alice Springs, Australia. He describes in his autobiography wrangling a herd of cattle and catching sight in the distance of a figure who turned out to be Williams. The following year they were married.

Polly Williams died of cancer on 24 June 2004. Subsequently Havers challenged his wife's will, in which she left her estate to her children from an earlier marriage, obtaining a share of the estate in an out-of-court settlement. In New York City on 8 June 2007 Havers married Georgiana Bronfman, the former wife of the Canadian billionaire drinks magnate, Edgar Bronfman, Sr. A blessing was held in Saint Tropez the following month.

Havers appeared in BBC One's genealogical show Who Do You Think You Are? in 2013.

He is the godfather of comedian Jack Whitehall.



  • The Life of Rock with Brian Pern (2014) as Tony PebblĂ©
  • Who Do You Think You Are? (2013 - Series 10, Episode 2)
  • Downton Abbey (2011)
  • Would I Lie to You? (2011 - Series 5, Episode 4)
  • I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here! (2010)
  • Coronation Street (2009-2010, 2012-2013) as Lewis Archer
  • Lunch Monkeys (2009-2011)
  • The Sarah Jane Adventures (2009)
  • Brothers & Sisters (2008-2009 - Season 3) as Roger Grant, Sally Fields's love interest
  • Little Britain (2004)
  • Manchild (2002-2003)
  • The Gentleman Thief (2001)
  • Dangerfield (1997-1999)
  • The Heart Surgeon as Dr. Alex Marsden (1997)
  • An Element Of Doubt as Richard (1996)
  • Murder Most Horrid (1996)
  • The Elizabeth Taylor Story (1995) As Michael Wilding.
  • Lie Down with Lions (1994)
  • The Good Guys (1992-1993)
  • A Perfect Hero (1991)
  • Sleepers (1991)
  • Naked Under Capricorn (Australian TV movie) (1989)
  • The Charmer (1987)
  • A Little Princess (1986)
  • Bon Voyage (1985)
  • Don't Wait Up (1983-1990) as Dr Tom Latimer
  • Rumpole of the Bailey (1979)
  • Birth of the Beatles (1979)
  • Pennies from Heaven (1978)
  • An Englishman's Castle (1978)
  • A Horseman Riding By (1978)
  • Nicholas Nickleby (1977) as Nicholas Nickleby
  • Glittering Prizes (1976)

Theatre (pantomime)

  • The Importance Of Being Earnest - Theatre Royal, Glasgow (2015)
  • Dick Whittington - Swindon Wyvern Theatre (2014)
  • The Importance Of Being Earnest - Harold Pinter Theatre (2014)
  • Robin Hood - Theatre Royal, Plymouth (2013)
  • Jack and the Beanstalk - The Mayflower (2012)
  • Peter Pan - Hawth Theatre (2011)
  • Dick Whittington - Birmingham Hippodrome (2010-2011)
  • Jack and the Beanstalk - Nottingham Theatre Royal (2009)
  • Aladdin - Yvonne Arnaud Theatre (2008)
  • Cinderella - Richmond Theatre (2007)

Theatre (other)

  • Rebecca (2011) as lead actor
  • Ricochet (1993) as producer and lead actor


  • Penelope (2006)
  • Paradise Lost (1999)
  • Quiet Days in Clichy (1990)
  • Farewell to the King (1989)
  • Empire of the Sun (1987)
  • The Whistle Blower (1986)
  • Burke & Wills (1985)
  • A Passage to India (1984)
  • Chariots of Fire (1981)
  • Pope Joan (1972)

Audio books

  • Tales from Watership Down (Richard Adams) (1996)
  • Doctor Who: No More Lies (2007) as Nick
  • The Scarifyers: The Secret Weapon of Doom (2010) as Victor Bright

[ Source: Wikipedia ]

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