Sadly the well known character actor William Simons, who played P.C. Alf Ventress in the long running TV series Heartbeat died last week. As a boy William had two unusual links with the 1950s EAGLE. He was the subject of the article Schoolboy in the African Bush in Eagle Vol.2 No.39 (dated 4th January 1952) when as an eleven year old he featured in the film Where No Vultures Fly. The article describes his experiences of filming on location for four months in Kenya. His other link with EAGLE was that he played Alfie Cutforth in the B.B.C. TV adaptation of Anthony Buckeridge's Rex Milligan stories, which had been specially created for EAGLE.
Where No Vultures Fly was the second most successful film at the box office in Britain in 1952 and led to a sequel West of Zanzibar, released in 1954 in which William also featured. Both films starred Anthony Steel as a Game Warden who sets up a Wildlife Reserve in Kenya and both feature villainous ivory poachers.