He was fastidious to a degree in his appearance. No one ever saw him unshaven, dishevelled or wearing the wrong clothes for the occasion…
In 1955 he wrote to Hawes & Curtis ordering eight suits from thirty yards of special tweed material and stressed that he wanted them to undertake not to sell the pattern to any other of their clients ‘so that it remains exclusive to Broadlands’. Three months later he wrote again saying he realised that this was not practical. His correspondence with H&C reveals the extent of his attention to the smallest detail in his eternal quest to be dressed always in the correct manner.
Pictured above: Lord Mountbatten with the young Prince Charles both looking timeless circa 1975.
Peter Cushing’s notes on playing Sherlock Holmes for his performance in The Hound of the Baskervilles [Hammer Films, 1959]:
Morning suit—hat—gloves?—cane. Cape over tweed suit (no hat). Put stains and burns on gloves. Don’t make Holmes obvious—or his suspicions. Suspect everything. Don’t do jackets up at all. Get nervous energy over. Just slip pipe to mouth (not open mouth). Puff clouds of smoke. Sardonic sense of humour. Flashes of steel after laconicness. The deerstalker has been dyed a little. Do cuffs up as if buttoned—short links. Make top quiff of hair stand up a little. Have hypnotic quality. Slight mystic quality.
Dialogue from Horror Express [Granada Films, 1972]:
Inspector Mirov: But what if one of you is the monster? Dr Wells: Monster? We’re British, you know!
I want to encourage much greater understanding of wool not only as a global environmental resource—versatile, sustainable, renewable and natural—but also as a global fashion resource of the highest quality, with a natural elasticity that makes it easy to care for and a cell structure that allows it to adapt to its environment, making it cool to wear in summer and warm in winter.
Michael York, quoted in What Fresh Lunacy is This?: The Authorized Biography of Oliver Reed, by Robert Sellers:
And certainly Oliver was an aristocratic sort. I knew he had a house in the country and I could see him as the country squire type, wearing tweeds with his gun dogs. He fitted in perfectly with that kind of image. He’d been brought up in good schools, with good manners…he was like an aristocratic ruffian, a complete contradiction in terms.