Michael George Ripper was born on 27 January 1913, in Portsmouth, Hampshire.
At age 16, Michael won a scholarship to drama school and began to appear in theatre professionally. His stage career continued until 1952, when an operation for a thyroid condition left him unable to project his voice sufficiently for the stage, after which he concentrated on his film career. In the late 1940s, He began his long association with Hammer, which resulted in his face becoming well known not only in Britain, but also worldwide. During this 25-year association, which began with a role in The Dark Road (1948) and ended with That’s Your Funeral (1972), Michael made a total of 34 appearances for Hammer, more than any other actor, playing an assortment of innkeepers, coachmen, gravediggers, poachers, and, occasionally, authority figures, usually with a comic twist. Although he made few films after his stint with Hammer, he continued his career with memorable television appearances, such as the chauffeur in BBC TV’s Butterflies (1978), until his retirement in the early 1990s.
Michael was married to Catherine Finn between 1972 and 1978 – she played his wife in Hammer’s Journey to the Unknown episode, Paper Dolls (1970)
Michael Ripper died in London on 28 June 2000.