Nicholas Lyndhurst

Nicholas Lyndhurst
Born Nicholas Simon Lyndhurst
(1961-04-20) 20 April 1961
Emsworth, Hampshire, England
Occupation Actor
Years active 1973–present.
Known for Rodney Trotter in Only Fools and Horses and Gary Sparrow in Goodnight Sweetheart
Television Going Straight (1978)
Butterflies (1978–83)
Only Fools and Horses (1981–2003, 2014)
The Two of Us (1986–90)
The Piglet Files (1990–92)
Goodnight Sweetheart (1993–99, 2016)
After You've Gone (2007–08)
Rock & Chips (2010–11)
New Tricks (2013–15)
Spouse(s) Lucy Smith (m. 1999)
Children Archie Bijörn Lyndhurst (born 2000)

Nicholas Simon Lyndhurst (born 20 April 1961)[1] is an English actor. He is known for playing Rodney Trotter in Only Fools and Horses, Gary Sparrow in Goodnight Sweetheart, Dan Griffin in the BBC drama New Tricks and Adam Parkinson in Carla Lane's series Butterflies. Lyndhurst also prominently starred as Ashley Philips in The Two of Us, as Fletch's son Raymond in Going Straight, the sequel to the classic British sitcom Porridge, Jimmy Venables in After You've Gone, and Freddie 'The Frog' Robdal in the Only Fools and Horses prequel Rock & Chips.

Early life

Lyndhurst was born and grew up in Emsworth, Hampshire.


Nicholas Simon Lyndhurst, born on 20 April 1961, was a child student at Corona Theatre School. He appeared in a succession of television adverts and children's films in the late 1970s. Lyndhurst first gained national recognition at the age of seventeen in the sitcom Butterflies written by Carla Lane, in which he played Adam Parkinson. He then played Raymond Fletcher, the teenage son of Norman Stanley Fletcher played by Ronnie Barker in Going Straight, followed by 'Dobson' in the BBC TV series To Serve Them All My Days, before achieving national stardom in the series Only Fools and Horses in which he played Rodney Trotter, the younger brother of the main character Derek "Del Boy" Trotter.

Only Fools and Horses started as a small comedy in 1981 and rapidly grew in popularity until it reached its peak in 1996 with its Christmas Day show in the UK. Lyndhurst appeared in the show from the very start, right up to its final airing at Christmas 2003. Only Fools and Horses reached No.1 British sitcom ever in the BBC poll in 2004.

During the 1990s, Lyndhurst also appeared in ITV's The Two of Us with Janet Dibley and The Piglet Files, as well as in a number of stage performances.

Between 1993 and 1999, he played the complex lead character of Gary Sparrow in the fantasy sitcom Goodnight Sweetheart. At around the same time, he was the face and voice on the TV and radio commercials for the telecommunications chain People's Phone. In 1997, he was offered the lead role of Gary in The Full Monty, but declined.

Between 1997 and 1999, Lyndhurst was the public face of the stationery chain store WH Smith, starring in their adverts as all four members of one family. He won a BAFTA for his acting in the adverts. In 1999, he played the villainous Uriah Heep opposite Daniel Radcliffe and Maggie Smith in David Copperfield.

In 2006, he appeared as Cruella de Vil's chauffeur, Reg Farnsworth, at the Children's Party at the Palace.

In 2007, Lyndhurst returned to the BBC with his first new sitcom in fourteen years, After You've Gone, in which he plays a divorced dad moving back into the marital home to look after his daughter (Dani Harmer) and son (Ryan Sampson) together with his mother-in-law, played by Celia Imrie, after his ex-wife goes to work as a recovery nurse on a third world disaster relief mission.

Lyndhurst played Freddie Robdal, the 1960s gangster father of Rodney Trotter, in Rock & Chips, the prequel to Only Fools and Horses. The show centres around Del Boy, Robdal and Joan Trotter in early 1960s Peckham. It was first broadcast on 24 January 2010, with another special transmitted on 29 December 2010, and the final episode at Easter 2011. Lyndhurst's stage performances have been relatively few, but he received good critical notices for his performance as Norman in Sir Ronald Harwood's The Dresser, directed by Peter Hall, and for his Trinculo in The Tempest.

In 2013, he joined the cast as a regular of Series 10 of New Tricks.[2]

In 2014, Lyndhurst revived his Only Fools and Horses character Rodney Trotter in a return Sport Relief Special which aired on 21 March 2014.

In 2016, Lyndhurst revived his Goodnight Sweetheart character Gary Sparrow in a one-off special episode, which aired on 2 September 2016.[3]

Personal life

He lives in West Sussex with his wife Lucy, a former ballet dancer (married in Chichester, West Sussex, 1999). They have a son, Archie.[4] Lyndhurst's hobbies include underwater diving and piloting his own aeroplanes. [5]



Year(s) Title Role Notes
1974 Heidi Peter
1975 Anne of Avonlea Davy Keith
1976 The Prince and the Pauper Prince Edward/Tom Canty
1976 Peter Pan Tootles
1978 The Tomorrow People Karl Brandt 1 episode: "Hitler's Last Secret"
1978 Going Straight Raymond Fletcher 4 episodes
1978 Play of the Week: Fairies Brian Grant
1978–83, 2000 Butterflies Adam Parkinson 4 series and 1 special
1979 Fathers Day Philip Television film
1980 To Serve Them All My Days Dobson 4 episodes
1981 Spearhead Private Wilson 4 episodes
1981–1996, 2001-2003, 2014 Only Fools and Horses Rodney Trotter 7 series and 15 specials
1982 Play for Today: A Mother Like Him Young Police Constable
1986–90 The Two of Us Ashley Philips 4 series
1990–92 The Piglet Files Peter Chapman 3 series
1993 Stalag Luft Chump Cosgrove
1993–99, 2016 Goodnight Sweetheart Gary Sparrow 6 series and 1 special
1996 Gulliver's Travels Clustril
1999 David Copperfield Uriah Heep 2-part television serial
2000 Thin Ice Dr Graham Thin One-off BBC drama
2002 The Life and Times of Aly Martin-Smith Aly Martin-Smith
2003 Murder in Mind Alan Willis 1 episode: "Landlord"
2007–08 After You've Gone Jimmy Venables 3 series
2010–11 Rock & Chips Freddie Robdal 3 episodes
2013–15 New Tricks Dan Griffin[6] 3 series
2013 Peter Panzerfaust Significant cast member

2016 Goodnight SweetHeart - Gary Sparrow



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