John Moffatt

Albert John Moffatt (24 September 1922 – 10 September 2012) was an English character actor and playwright, known for his portrayal of Hercule Poirot on BBC Radio in twenty-five productions and for a wide range of stage roles in the West End from the 1950s to the 1980s. Moffatt's parents wished him to follow a career in a bank, but Moffatt secretly studied acting and made his stage debut in 1944. After five years in provincial repertory theatre he made his first London appearance in 1946. In the early 1950s he was cast in small parts in productions headed by John Gielgud and Noël Coward, and achieved increasingly prominent roles over the next decade. He was a member of the English Stage Company, the Old Vic, and the National Theatre companies. His range was considerable, embracing the classics, new plays, revue and pantomime. Moffatt began broadcasting on radio in 1950 and on television in 1953. His most enduring role was that of Agatha Christie's Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot, in a long sequence of radio adaptations of her novels, beginning in 1987 and continuing at intervals until 2007. In 1992/3, Moffat played M. Comeliau, the Examining Magistrate, in the BBC's Maigret starring Michael Gambon. He was, perhaps, less well known as a film actor but took part in twelve films between 1956 and 1987.