A Conversation for Spike Milligan - Comedian

'Spike' - the name

Post 1


Nice article. I was under the impression though that the name 'Spike' was connected with his trumpet playing, the spike being the trumpet stand or rest. Have read that several times in recent obituaries anyway. It would seem odd for a performer to take the name of another performer (it usually being the case that performers have to change their real names because someone already famous has the same name). Anyone able to confirm the origin of 'Spike' at all?

'Spike' - the name

Post 2

Lonnytunes - Winter Is Here

The information came from a pretty comprehensive two-page article about Spike that was published in the International Express (part of the Daily Express stable of papers) a few days after his death.

'Spike' - the name

Post 3


At the time (1920's, 30's) the word "spike" was also used to denote a tramp's bed or a homeless men's hostel, and by extension the tramp himself.

(Ref. George Orwell, "Down and Out in London and Paris")

As Milligan developed the persona of a trumpet and guitar playing tramp during his wartime entertainment work - his first pro act, the Bill Hall Trio, were effectively dressed as performing tramps - it's hard to rule out an association here?

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