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On this Day 1957: Ken Dodd insures his teeth

Ken Dodd at ATV/ABC's Alpha TV Centre

On this Day

On this Day 1957: Ken Dodd insures his teeth

OTD, April 5th, 1957…

It might not quite be a David Beckham level of insurance when the football star insured his legs some twenty years ago for a cool $70 million, however on this day back in 1957 comedian, actor and singer Ken Dodd ‘insured’ his famous big teeth for big money.

Dodd, who was at the time of this report for ATV Midland News, performing at the Birmingham Hippodrome, had told the press he’d insured his trademark teeth. The Daily Mirror reported at the time:

“Ken has insured his prominent, protruding teeth for £10,000 with a Birmingham insurance broker. It will cost him £25 a year and he must clean his teeth three times a day with an accepted brand of toothpaste and he must not eat rock.”

In the ATV footage Ken is seen at the Grand Hotel in Birmingham having his teeth examined and pretending to use a toothbrush. He is then seen signing his insurance documents and joking with the Birmingham insurance agent Arthur Harrison over a stick of rock.

Kenneth Arthur Dodd was born on November 8th 1927 in Knotty Ash, Liverpool, in a 1782-built house on Thomas Lane which has been part of his family for generations. Nicknamed Doddy he studied at Knotty Ash School with an early talent for singing saw him become part of the local church choir. By 18 Ken was working across the country as a salesman, taking on gigs in the evening at social clubs. It would be the East Midlands that gave Dodd his ‘big break’ when aged 26, he tread the boards of Nottingham Empire as ‘Professor Yaffle Chucklebutty, Operatic Tenor and Sausage Knotter’.

Ken married Anne Jones on the 9th of March 2018, two days before his death. They had met first back in 1961 when she appeared in The Ken Dodd Christmas Show at the Manchester Opera House. They however didn’t venture into a relationship until 1978 a year after Anita Boutin, whom Ken had been engaged to, passed away. Anita died aged only 45 from a brain tumour. They had been a couple for 22 years.

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