Gary Lammin

Photography © Rocco Redondo

Salt & Pepper
Roger Davidson


I am from a family of London dockers and as a kid, I would go to work with my father during summer holidays. It was magical, the docks were a place of work, but a place also of the most authentic street theatre, so useful to later instruct me as an actor. Those dockers were like characters from television programs and films. There were tough guys, funny guys, rogues and the outright dangerous. They are still with me to this day, in my minds eye. Later when I had left school, I was playing pool in a boozer in Whitechapel and this elegant woman approached asking if I had ever tried acting? I replied "Yeah at school; in school plays and I loved it." Her name was Millie Kieve, artistic director of The East End Theatre Company, which put on plays at The Half Moon Theatre in Stepney. I auditioned for the play, 'Chicken Soup With Barley' and got the part. Later during the press night, casting director Corinne Rodriguez of London Weekend Television offered me a part in The Moneymen by Tony Marchant, the director of which was John Bruce, who subsequently cast me in the BBC screenplay ' No Further Cause For Concern' - a prison drama. I would go on to work with John several more times over the years. Corinne also introduced me that night to Arnold Wesker, author of Chicken Soup With Barley and another casting director, Gillian Diamond, who later introduced me to Harold Pinter. I would sometimes read aloud Harold's new character ideas at his home in Holland Park, crikey what a house! Even Mick Jagger wouldn't be able to afford to live there!  My television career quickly began to take off with appearances since in over twenty television series to date. Equally at home on film or in theatre, I also kept up with classes at the London Actors Centre, where I met the brilliant Nina Finburgh. Then I took improvisation classes at Jacksons Lane in Archway, where I met the genius talent, Ken Campbell. When my father was knocked down on a zebra crossing, I had to become, as an only son, his constant carer. Consequently I dropped out of the acting industry for several years. When my dad died he left a bit of money with a note saying, "Gary get back into your acting, your quite good at it, love Dad." I used that money to go to East 15 Acting School, so if you want an authentic working class geezer who knows his way around a film set; you've come to the right place. 

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