"Albert Arthur Powell was born in a small house in Russum's Yard, Bridgegate, Rotherham on 30/01/1900. His father called him "Sandy" because of his ginger hair.His father left home when he was four years old and never came back, leaving his mother with Sandy and his younger sister. His mother, Lily, who had been a variety artist quickly returned to work first as a waitress/singer in a pub and then contracted as a feature artist. Young Sandy used to go along with her and hide under the piano out of the way. Lily obtained a number of dates and Sandy was taken touring with her. At the age of five he got his first part - sitting in the audience belting out the choruses to encourage the audience to sing along. In 1907 he first appeared on the stage as a boy soprano, but when his voice broke he gave up singing and concentrated on comedy and impressions. He often worked with his mother as the duo "Lily and Sandy".
Sandy was taught to read and write by his mother but had little formal education. The law requiring him to attend school in whatever town his mother was appearing in being largely unobserved. His experience came from life itself.
By the time the First World War broke out he was in regular work and topped the bill when he was just eighteen. He was called up on 30/04/1918 but was rejected as unfit for service. Due to shortage of manpower he was called up again on 11/11/1918 - Armistice Day as it happened.
Sandy Powell had a long career on the stage and in pantomime. In addition to this he made his first broadcast on the radio in 1928 which was the start of many years of radio comedy. He also recorded many of his music hall and radio sketches on record, the first of these "The Lost Policeman" in 1929. These were very popular and earned him a very comfortable sum in royalties over the years. He appeared in films and during the Second World War was a entertainer to the troops.
Sandy Powell was awarded the MBE in 1975. He died on 26/06/1982; still the old trouper preparing for his next show."