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John Grieve


1924 - 2003

Actor. Born in Maryhill (Glasgow), one of eleven children, Grieve was intent on going to sea and World War II ensured this ambition was achieved. After leaving the navy, he attended the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow, before joining the Citizen's Theatre in 1951. Grieve built a career based on drama and variety, working with the likes of Stanley Baxter (b. 1926) and Jimmy Logan (1928 - 2001). He had bit-parts in films such as the dramatisation of John Buchan's book The Thirty-Nine Steps (1978) and The Eye of the Needle (1981). However, it is as the hapless engineer, Macphail, in BBC Scotland's classic television comedy The Vital Spark, that Grieve will best be remembered.

He died in hospital in Glasgow.


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