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Graham Ashley played the Overseer in the Doctor Who television story The Underwater Menace.

One of his most famous roles was Gold Five in Episode IV of Star Wars. However, Ashley is perhaps best remembered as the bad-tempered school caretaker Mr "Grumpy" Garfield in the first three seasons of the children's school drama series Grange Hill (1978-2008), who was the very first character to appear on-screen in the opening episode.

He is also known for playing PC Tommy Hughes on Dixon of Dock Green. His other credits included roles on The Plane Makers, Dr. Finlay's Casebook, The Avengers, Danger Man, No Hiding Place, Emergency – Ward 10, Doctor in the House, Steptoe and Son, Softly, Softly: Taskforce, Porridge, Churchill's People, Z-Cars and Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em.

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