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Ron Goodwin (1925 -- 2003)

Plymouth-born Ron Goodwin was one of Britain's leading film composers. Indeed, some of his scores have lasted better than the films for which he wrote them - for example, his stirring theme for The Trap (1966), an Oliver Reed melodrama set in British Columbia, is more widely recognised today as the title music for BBC TV's coverage of the London Marathon.

Aged 18, Ron started out arranging scores for music publishers. At 25, he joined Parlophone (EMI) Records as producer George Martin's musical director, and began his own recording career with the Ron Goodwin Concert Orchestra, becoming a popular Parlophone artiste with gold and platinum discs to his credit.

His first film score was for the Rank drama, Whirlpool (1958). Two years later, he started composing for films made at MGM British Studios and never looked back. Altogether he wrote more than 60 soundtracks, including the rousing Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines, Where Eagles Dare, Battle of Britain and 633 Squadron (with the famous main theme in 6-3-3 time).

He conducted symphony orchestras worldwide and received many accolades, including three Ivor Novello Awards. He died peacefully at home on 8 January 2003, aged 77.