Only Fools and Horses

Only Fools and Horses star who once shook hands with Hitler and regretted not killing him

TV legend Lennard Pearce had an encounter with the dictator

Grandad wasn’t exactly the smartest card in the deck but he was a crafty, funny, and very loveable soul in Only Fools and Horses.

Real-name Edward Kitchener ‘Ted’ Trotter, he always minded the Trotters’ flat in Nelson Mandela House, Peckham, from his armchair as he rarely left the family living room where he famously watched multiple televisions sets at once.

The scruffy pensioner had an easy life as Del Boy and Rodney earned the household’s living selling hooky gear around South London.

Played by Lennard Pearce, Grandad was full of sarcasm and quick wit and made viewers laugh out loud with cheeky one-liners.

But off-screen Pearce had real war stories to tell.

In fact, he met Adolf Hitler in the 1930s, which came when he was in his early 20s, and missed an opportunity to assassinate him.

Pearce, who played Granddad for 23 episodes, told pals he regretted not grabbing a gun and killing him and thereby preventing the Second World War.

Born in 1915, Pearce relayed the story to actor pal and Only Fools And Horses co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, The Mirror reports.

Lyndhurst said: “He was a young actor touring Europe and they were playing some German city and the Nazis walked in.

“The top honchos of the Nazi party had seen the play and came to congratulate them ­afterwards. Lennard shook hands with Adolf Hitler.

“He only ever told me once, but he said: ‘Had I known then what I know now, I would have drawn the pistol from one of the bodyguards and I’d have done my best to kill him.”

Adolf Hitler (1889 – 1945) in Munich in the spring of 1932. (Image: Heinrich Hoffmann/Archive Photos/Getty Images)

Pearce died suddenly from a heart attack aged 69 in December 1984 during the fourth Only Fools and Horses series.

Steve Clark, author of Only Fools and Horses – The Official Inside Story, added: “We’re used to hearing Uncle Albert’s stories about his rather dubious wartime service in the navy, but it’s incredible that Lennard Pearce actually met Hitler during his rise to power and could have put a stop to him before he was able to do so much evil.”

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