Credit: Shutterstock/Bob Monkhouse

They laughed when I said I was going to be a comedian. Well, they're not laughing now.

As a stand up comedian and game show host, Bob Monkhouse was a television institution, who hosted in over 30 different formats, including The Golden Shot, Celebrity Squares and Family Fortunes.
His childhood was a difficult one - despite being well-off, his parents were not affectionate, and he would often be beaten for no reason. He only recalled being embraced once by his mother - when she thought that her own mum had died by a German bomb. He began his career in comedy writing early, and was first published in The Beano while he was still in school.

His career began to flourish after the Second World War. Ever industrious, Monkhouse penned a letter to the BBC and slipped it on to his Captain’s desk, knowing that he probably wouldn’t read the letter before signing it. His cheek paid off, and with a glowing recommendation from an RAF Group Captain, the BBC gave Bob the audition he had been clamouring for.

What followed was one of the longest running television careers in British comedy history. He was rarely off the screen with his sharp wit and one-liners, honed in cabaret clubs, defining an era of presenting.