Patricia HAYES (1909-1998)

Patricia Hayes This Is Your Life

programme details...

  • Edition No: 331
  • Subject No: 332
  • Broadcast live: Wed 19 Apr 1972
  • Broadcast time: 7.00-7.30pm
  • Venue: Euston Road Studios
  • Series: 12
  • Edition: 23

on the guest list...

  • Teresa - daughter
  • Richard O'Callaghan - son
  • Gemma - daughter
  • Arthur Askey
  • Charlie Chester
  • Norman Vaughan
  • John Bluthal
  • Eric Sykes
  • Jeremy Sandford
  • Moira - sister
  • Brian - brother
  • Denis Carey
  • Jevan Brandon-Thomas
  • Leonard Sachs
  • Charles Hawtrey
  • Ted Ray
  • Thomas - grandson
  • Katie - granddaughter
  • Michael Robbins
  • Filmed tribute:
  • JB Priestley

production team...

  • Researcher: unknown
  • Writer: unknown
  • Director: Margery Baker
  • Producer: Malcolm Morris
  • names above in bold indicate subjects of This Is Your Life
related pages...
Patricia Hayes This Is Your Life

Patricia Hayes with guest Charles Hawtrey and host Eamonn Andrews on This Is Your Life

Patricia Hayes's autobiography

Teresa Jennings and Patricia Hayes recall this edition of This Is Your Life in their book, A Funny Old Life...

While the rehearsals for Relative Values were in progress, an old school friend of mine, actress Pauline Collins, was selected to be a victim on This Is Your Life and my mother and I were both asked to be involved in the programme. I shall always remember Pauline turning to Eamonn Andrews when he said, 'Pauline Collins, This Is Your Life,' and saying, 'But I have no life!' She felt that she was too young to be a subject.

However, while they were preparing Pauline's life, one of the organisers said, 'This is ridiculous! Here we are with Patricia Hayes appearing on Pauline's Life, and we have never done her Life.' Immediately plans were swung into action, all in utmost secrecy.

Having contacted as many stars, old colleagues, friends and relatives as possible, they decided on a plan of campaign to catch her unawares. The rehearsals for Relative Values were being held at the Globe Theatre during the day and there was also a play being performed there at night. The cast of Relative Values were warned that, on a particular evening, the BBC would be televising an excerpt from the other play, in an attempt to improve its ticket sales. They were told to take no notice of the crew who would be setting up cameras and lighting. Funnily enough, my mother did think that it was a little strange, as she had seen an excerpt from that very play not all that long ago; however, she was not in the least suspicious. Then the cast were told to bring in something special to wear after rehearsals that same day, since a photographer was coming in to take some publicity shots.

On the designated day, at 5pm, the producer Clive Swift said, 'You can all go home now, except Patricia and Margaret. I want to rehearse this scene.'

My mother piped up quickly 'But what about our photocall?'

'Oh, yes, everyone – don't forget the photocall!' he said quickly, hoping that his mistake had given nothing away. Joyce Blair, who was also in the play, quickly combed my mother's hair and put a little make-up on her, 'To make her pretty for the photos!'

'Start the scene,' said Clive Swift, 'and don't stop; I want to get a good run on it with the two of you. By the way, if the lights come up, take no notice, it's these blessed people preparing for tonight's television. Just carry on.'

'We started acting hammer and tongs,' recalls Patricia. 'The lights came up as expected, then I became aware that somebody was edging up beside me on my left, but I carried on until a voice suddenly said, "I'm sorry to interrupt you" and I looked around and there stood Eamonn Andrews with the red book in his hands and I said, "Oh Margaret, it's going to be your Life," but he said, "No – Patricia Hayes – Award-Winning Actress. This Is Your Life." I laughed and laughed to think how I had been tricked into it.

'When they did my Life, I had a very enjoyable evening with a succession of comedians, but afterwards I thought, "That wasn't really my life. They left people like Nan Nan out, she should have come on with my two grandchildren, Katie and Thomas."'

Series 12 subjects

George Best | Alfred Marks | Rolf Harris | Don Whillans | Sacha Distel | Les Dawson | Doris Hare | Keith Michell | David Frost
Barry John | Michael Flanders | Charlie Williams | Ginette Spanier | Hughie Green | Tom Courtenay | Hylda Baker
Gordon Banks | Alan Rudkin | Michael Wood | Graham Kerr | Pauline Collins | Ray Illingworth
Patricia Hayes | Nosher Powell | Richard Briers | Lulu