Elton Hayes

I recently found this intersting article about Elton Hayes on the Mudlark Cafe website from Evelyn Branston:

"Like so many children growing up in the 1950s, Elton was a great favourite of mine and has remained so over the years. He was one of the country's best known entertainers in the immediate post-war years, particularly for his renditions of Edward Lear's nonsense verses.

In addition to his many radio and TV programs, Elton appeared on the West End stage in 'The Beaux Stratagem' at the Lyric Theatre and I saw him as the special guest singer in 'The Sooty Show' at the Adelphi Theatre in 1956. After playing the part of Alan-a-Dale in the film 'Robin Hood' (the 1952 Walt Disney production), he toured the United States and made innumerable radio and TV appearances. He even sang 'Whistle My Love' in a cowboy setting! The Small Guitar (which incidentally he bought from a junk shop and restored) accompanied him on all his travels.

In the mid 60s Elton retired from show business and began a new career as a farmer, breeding pedigree livestock. He was able to devote more time to his horses and took up carriage driving. Unfortunately, in 1995 he suffered a severe stroke and was in hospital for several months. Showing the same courage and determination that had helped him recover from rheumatic fever many years ago, Elton's health improved. Having no children, he decided to sell his show business memorabilia and move to live with friends. I heard about the auction just in time and was able to make successful bids for several items, including 'The Small Guitar'.

Now in his 87th [2nd August 2001] year, Elton spends his leisure time listening to classical music, doing crosswords and enjoying the company of his friends."

Elton Hayes died in September 2001.

Evelyn, if you have any more details of Elton's life that you would like to share. Please get in touch at


Clement of the Glen said...

Elton Hayes

Neil said...

It appears that with the Walt Disney marketing campaign for Story of Robin Hood 1952, Elton Hayes was widely used in the USA to promote the film. He would have been very good. Also the film gave his career a kick start even if it needed one. He used to appear on TV quite a lot in the fifties I remember. Disney certainly knew how to promote his films on a worldwide scale. I have recetn;ly read that the Disney Film before Robin Hood ie Treasure Island had a budget of 1.8 million dollars and Robin Hood I would think was at least that which was a very large amount in those days - it is today. The film looks quality though.

Clement of the Glen said...

We have seen some of the various items used for marketing the Story of Robin Hood by Disney in the memorabilia section. Including jig-saw puzzles,books and comics etc. There was a great deal more. If anyone could promote a film, Disney could!

I will be showing some more memorabilia soon.