Eric Norman Thompson (9 November 1929 – 30 November 1982) was an English actor, television presenter and producer. He is best remembered for creating and performing the English narration for The Magic Roundabout, which he adapted from the original French Le Manège Enchanté.
Eric Norman Thompson was born on 9 November 1929 in Sleaford, Lincolnshire, England, the son of Annie (née Jackson) and George Henry Thompson, and grew up in Rudgwick, Sussex, attending Collyer's School, Horsham. He trained to be an actor at the Old Vic acting school in London and joined the Old Vic theatre company in 1952.
He worked regularly for the BBC, and was a presenter of the children's television programme Play School from 1964 to 1967. He was best known as the narrator of The Magic Roundabout, for which he also wrote the English language scripts, using the visuals from the original French Le Manège Enchanté. These were transmitted from October 1965 to January 1977. His daughter Emma Thompson has noted his influence on her career, saying "his humour and his rigour, a self-taught man, who loved words and loved the use of words and how they worked. Everything about that was hugely influential." Thompson rarely worked on television after his voice became well-known, but occasionally appeared in programmes such as Doctor Who in the serial The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve in 1966.
This section does not cite any sources. (March 2018) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
On 30 November 1982, Thompson died of a pulmonary embolism in London just three weeks after his 53rd birthday.