The abiding memory that millions around the world will have of Nosher Powell, who has died aged 84, is of him fighting in vain to save his aeroplane after it had been attacked by a seagull in Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines (1965). Gert Fröbe may have been the German officer in charge of the plane but it was Powell who, as the stuntman and double, ended up in the water.
Powell’s first appearance as a stuntman was in Laurence Olivier’s Henry V (1944). He also had small roles in David Lean’s Oliver Twist (1948) and Cosh Boy (1953), with Joan Collins. In 1952 he was a boxer in Emergency Call, in which he fought the former world champion Freddie Mills. Powell had a decent if not outstanding boxing career himself, reaching No 3 in the British heavyweight rankings.