Life Second Time Around
Life Second Time Around

related pages...

Eamonn Andrews


Arthur Askey


Shirley Bassey


George Best


Dora Bryan


Matt Busby


Barbara Cartland


Leslie Crowther


Michael Denison


Diana Dors


Charlie Drake


Dulcie Gray


Bob Hope


Evelyn Laye


Vera Lynn


Alicia Markova


Anna Neagle


Ted Ray


Brian Rix


Harry Secombe


Richard Todd


June Whitfield


Norman Wisdom


Edward Woodward


The Theatre of Dreams

Featuring those names associated with Manchester United, including two ‘second timers’


A Dancer’s Life

Highlighting those subjects from the world of dance


The Glamorous Life

Placing the spotlight on the stars of Hollywood


Radio Times

Highlighting those subjects known on the air waves


Classical Life

Featuring subjects from the world of classical music


The Night We Shocked Petula

TVTimes photo feature on Petula Clark’s second This Is Your Life surprise


“For the first time, for the second time” is how Eamonn surprised the show’s first recipient of a second tribute - Manchester United’s manager Sir Matt Busby, in May 1971.


Since then, 41 other names have been honoured a second time - or in one case, even a third time!


As Michael Aspel said on the show’s The Night of 1000 Lives - “...it does happen that someone’s had such a full life that one book simply isn’t enough...”

Eamonn Andrews Eamonn Andrews Eamonn ANDREWS
29 July 1955 & 15 May 1974
Eamonn became the very first This Is Your Life subject on British television when he was surprised by the show’s creator, Ralph Edwards. He was caught out a second time while helping to perform a magic trick on David Nixon’s television show. Nixon took charge of the Big Red Book on that occasion.
  Arthur Askey Arthur ASKEY
28 December 1959 &
25 December 1974 - for a Christmas Day special the popular diminutive comedian was surprised by Eamonn, dressed as Humpty Dumpty, while on a television show discussing pantomime with Ted Ray and Jimmy Tarbuck.
Shirley Bassey Shirley Bassey Shirley BASSEY
29 November 1972 - the popular and successful singer from Cardiff’s Tiger Bay, was surprised by Eamonn at Heathrow Airport, having just flown in from her home in Switzerland.

6 January 1993 - Michael caught up with Shirley, for her second tribute, at the curtain call of a sell-out concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
George Best George Best George BEST
17 November 1971 - the Northern Irish footballer, associated with Manchester United, and one of the first celebrities of the sport, was surprised at the height of his fame by Eamonn in a London restaurant.

6 March 2003 - Michael surprised George at Teddington Studios, referring to his first Big Red Book - ‘will you regard this as Chapter 2?’
Honor Blackman Honor Blackman Honor BLACKMAN
17 December 1969 - the actress, best known for her role as Cathy Gale in TV’s The Avengers was surprised by Eamonn in a TV studio dressing room.

17 February 1993 - Honor was caught out by Michael during a ‘mock’ television interview.
  Richard Briers Richard BRIERS
3 May 1972 &
9 March 1994 - Michael interrupted a TV interview to surprise the comedy actor for his second time in the chair of honour.
Dora Bryan Dora Bryan Dora BRYAN
2 April 1962 - the actress was surprised by Eamonn at her Brighton home: “Tonight? Oh dear! I’ve got to do some auditions at 4!”

25 January 1989 - Dora was caught out by Michael on the stage of Manchester’s Opera House, at the curtain call of Hello, Dolly!: “I’d have had some new eyelashes if I’d known!”
Matt Busby Matt Busby Matt BUSBY
6 January 1958 – The celebrated manager of Manchester United was surprised by Eamonn at the BBC Manchester studios in Dickenson Road.

12 May 1971 - "For the first time, for the second time" is how Eamonn surprised the show's first second-timer - just ahead of Sir Matt's last game leading the Reds in a derby match with Manchester City at Main Road.

Marti Caine Marti Caine Marti CAINE
22 March 1978 - the popular comedienne was surprised by Eamonn while filming in her home town of Sheffield.

30 November 1994 - Michael caught Marti at Woburn Golf Club, with the help of Tom O’Connor and Valerie Singleton, to update her story, including her brave, ongoing fight against cancer.
Barbara Cartland Barbara Cartland Barbara CARTLAND
24 March 1958 - the author and society figure was surprised by Eamonn in the audience of the BBC Television Theatre.

13 December 1989 - Michael interrupted a photo shoot at Elstree Studios to surprise Barbara: “I didn’t know it was still on!”
Petula Clark
Petula Clark Petula CLARK
6 February 1964 & 30 April 1975 & 6 March 1996
The internationally popular recording star is the only person to receive the tribute THREE times - most recently when Michael caught her at the curtain call of Sunset Boulevard at the Adelphi Theatre.
Petula also has the distinction of having the shortest gap between ‘Lifes’ - just 11 years.
Leslie Crowther Leslie Crowther Leslie CROWTHER

28 March 1973 – Eamonn surprised the actor and comedian while he was making a celebrity appearance at an Antiques Fair at London's Earls Court.

9 November 1994 - Michael caught Leslie at a book signing session in Selfridges on London's Oxford Road.

Les Dawson Les Dawson Les DAWSON
22 December 1971 - the comedian was surprised by Eamonn on an edition of Opportunity Knocks. The Big Red Book was wrapped as a present for Les to open.

23 December 1992 - Les was caught by Michael on stage at the Theatre Royal, Plymouth, at the curtain call of the pantomime Dick Whittington.
Michael Denison Michael Denison & Dulcie Gray Michael DENISON & Dulcie GRAY
Regular guests on many editions of This Is Your Life, the famous acting husband and wife team were featured in a joint tribute broadcast on 19 April 1995 - the only couple to have both previously received their own tributes!

Dulcie’s show was seen on 7 March 1973 while Michael’s was on 23 February 1977.
Diana Dors
Diana Dors Diana DORS
1 April 1957 - British cinema’s sex symbol, just back from Hollywood, was surprised by Eamonn at the BBC Television Theatre.

27 October 1982 - Eamonn ambushed Diana, now a popular character actress, as she entered the Royalty Theatre.
Charlie Drake Charlie Drake Charlie DRAKE
11 December 1961 - the comedian was surprised by Eamonn in a rehearsal room at the London Palladium, just ahead of his performance in that year’s pantomime.

1 November 1995 - Michael dressed as a policeman to surprise Charlie at the curtain call of the comedy play Funny Money at London's Playhouse Theatre.
Rolf Harris Rolf Harris Rolf HARRIS
1 December 1971 - the popular Australian entertainer was surprised by Eamonn on a busy central London street.
6 September 1995 - Rolf was surprised by Michael while taking part in a bagpipes parade in Edinburgh. Rolf has also twice been a subject of the Australian version of This Is Your Life - so holds the record for the most honoured person!
  Thora Hird Thora HIRD
16 January 1964 &
30 December 1996 - the popular comedy actress was surprised by Michael in the Yorkshire town of Holmfirth while filming for Last of the Summer Wine.
Bob Hope Bob & Dolores Hope Bob HOPE
18 & 25 November 1970 - the British-born comedian was caught by Eamonn in the foyer of Thames TV’s Euston Road Studios. The show was a rare two-parter shown over consecutive weeks.

27 December 1995 - Michael travelled to California to surprise Bob and his wife Dolores at the CBS Studios, for a double-subject special edition.
  Evelyn Laye Evelyn LAYE
31 August 1959 &
19 December 1990 - the veteran actress and singer - star of musical theatre, was surprised by Michael on stage at Croydon’s Ashcroft Theatre.
Andrew Lloyd Webber Andrew Lloyd Webber Andrew LLOYD WEBBER
26 November 1980 - Eamonn and the cast of Andrew's current hit show Evita surprised the successful musical theatre composer in the foyer of Thames Television's Euston Road Studios.
2 November 1994 - Michael caught Andrew at the Adelphi Theatre - where his latest hit show Sunset Boulevard was playing to packed houses - for a specially extended edition.
  Joe Loss Joe LOSS
7 May 1963 &
15 October 1980 - the prolific band leader was surprised by Eamonn at London’s Portman Hotel during a star-studded party to celebrate Joe’s 50 years in show business.
Vera Lynn
Vera Lynn Vera LYNN
14 October 1957 - the popular singer - known as the ‘Forces’ Sweetheart’ - was surprised by Eamonn at the BBC Television Theatre.

1 January 1979 - it really was a case of ‘we’ll meet again’ as Eamonn catches up with the singing star a second time, at London’s Cafe Royal.
Alicia Markova Alicia Markova Alicia MARKOVA
11 January 1960 - the ballerina was surprised by Eamonn at London’s Royal Festival Hall after being handed the This Is Your Life book, which had been ‘disguised’ as a present.

4 October 1995 - Alicia was surprised by Michael during a television interview, in another grand setting - the crush bar of London’s Royal Opera House.
Spike Milligan Spike Milligan Spike MILLIGAN
11 April 1973 - the comedian and ‘Goon’ was surprised by Eamonn during a reunion of his former Army colleagues at the De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-on-Sea: “You call this a life?”

15 February 1995 - Michael surprised Spike on the concourse of London’s Euston station: “Well I’ve been dead 10 years!”
John Mills John Mills John MILLS
19 December 1960 - Eamonn surprised the popular film actor at the entrance of Pinewood Studios.

26 October 1983 - Eamonn caught up with the head of the acting dynasty a second time, on the stage of London’s Wydham’s Theatre, for an extended edition of the show.
Bob Monkhouse Bob Monkhouse Bob MONKHOUSE
10 February 1982 - the comedian and game show host was surprised by Eamonn - and a host of television personalities - in a mock-up of the Celebrity Squares set in London’s St Martin’s Lane.

23 April 2003 - Michael surprised Bob at the BBC Television Centre for a specially extended edition of the show.
  Dudley Moore Dudley MOORE
13 December 1972 &
4 & 11 March 1987 - the team flew to Hollywood so Eamonn could surprise the diminutive comedian while he was entertaining diners in his own restaurant. Dudley’s second tribute was told over two episodes.
Anna Neagle Anna Neagle Anna NEAGLE
17 February 1958 - the popular actress was surprised by Eamonn at the BBC Television Theatre, during a recording session for her film production ‘Wonderful Things’.

9 March 1983 - Eamonn enters London’s Royal National Hotel on a pony-driven carriage to surprise Dame Anna, currently appearing in pantomime.
Ted Ray Ted Ray Ted RAY
23 October 1955 - the popular radio comedian was surprised by Eamonn at the BBC Television Theatre.

26 February 1975 - for his second tribute Eamonn surprised Ted by turning up in a Rolls-Royce at his home in Southgate in the London borough of Enfield.
Brian Rix Brian Rix Brian RIX
23 October 1961 – Eamonn and the team were in a panic waiting to surprise the actor and charity worker who arrived later than planned to a friend's house in Surrey.

13 April 1977 – Brian was caught by Eamonn a second time at a charity cheque presentation on the stage of Her Majesty's Theatre in London.
  Jimmy Savile Jimmy SAVILE
28 January 1970 &
12 December 1990 - the radio disc jockey, media personality and charity worker was surprised by Michael at London’s Kensington Hilton Hotel.
Harry Secombe Harry Secombe Harry SECOMBE
31 March 1958 - the popular Welsh entertainer and ‘Goon’ was surprised by Eamonn as he entered the BBC Television Theatre.

7 March 1990 - Michael surprised Harry for his second tribute at a book signing in a London branch of WH Smith.
Richard Todd Richard Todd Richard TODD
7 March 1960 - the actor was surprised by Eamonn in Lime Grove Studios, West London, before heading round the corner to the BBC Television Theatre for the show.

23 November 1988 - Michael caught up with Richard on stage at the Theatre Royal Windsor, where the show was then recorded.
  Eva Turner Eva TURNER
14 September 1959 – The internationally renowned soprano was surprised by Eamonn at the BBC Television Theatre.

9 February 1983 – Eamonn caught Dame Eva a second time just prior to her 91st birthday at the Royal Opera House.
Peter Ustinov Peter Ustinov Peter USTINOV
30 November 1977 - the actor and raconteur was surprised by Eamonn at Pinewood Studios on the set of Death on the Nile.

28 December 1994 - Michael interrupted Peter’s lunch at the United Nations headquarters in Geneva to surprise him before flying back to London for a specially extended edition of the show.
  Frankie Vaughan Frankie VAUGHAN

15 April 1970 &

30 March 1994 Michael surprised the singer and entertainer during a photo call for Active Hearts at a London sports centre.
June Whitfield June Whitfield June WHITFIELD
14 April 1976 - Eamonn surprised the comedy actress in her own living room, at her home in Wimbledon!

8 March 1995 - Michael crept up on June during a recording session for Absolutely Fabulous at the BBC Television Centre, as her colleagues from the comedy series looked on.
Norman Wisdom Norman Wisdom Norman WISDOM
2 December 1957 – Eamonn surprised the comedy star backstage at Manchester’s Playhouse Theatre.

11 February 1987 - Eamonn caught Norman at St Margaret’s Tavern in Twickenham, on his 72nd birthday!

Edward Woodward Edward Woodward Edward WOODWARD
3 February 1971 - the actor was surprised by Eamonn in the bar of London’s White House Hotel.

1 February 1995 - Michael, dressed appropriately, surprised Edward during a photo shoot at Syon House in West London.
  Billy Wright Billy WRIGHT
8 May 1961 &
17 January 1990 - the Wolverhampton Wanderers footballer - and husband to one third of The Beverley Sisters - was surprised by Michael at Teddington Studios.