† Apr 18 1935 – Apr 18 2016*
A ubiquitous character actor with a hangdog expression and the definitive British comb-over, usually seen representing the stolid middle-aged old-school type. Rarely given a really memorable part or much in the way of dialogue, yet he's been a stalwart of British TV since the '60s. He pops up in fare as varied as 'Blott on the Landscape', 'Grange Hill', 'Murder Most English', ''The Avengers', 'Colditz', and in particular, a good bit of period drama, from 'Jeeves and Wooster', 'The Onedin Line', and 'The Duchess of Duke Street' to 'David Copperfield', 'Dombey & Son', and 'The Rivals of Sherlock Holmes'
With a face for comedy, it's also likely that you'll see him in things like 'Black Adder', 'The New Statesman', 'Terry & June', 'Goodnight Sweetheart', as well as the Jim Broadbent flop vehicle 'The Peter Principle', and with Robert Lindsay in 'My Family'.
Fairly limited work in the cinema includes roles in 'Elephant Man' (1980), Clint Eastwood's 'White Hunter Black Heart' (1990), and the silly silk-undies romp 'Jane and the Lost City' (1987).
*Edit: Mar 31 2017. I was sorry to read recently that John Rapley passed away on his 81st birthday last year.
John Rapley - imdb