Timothy Spall was born on February 27th 1957 in Battersea, London. His mother was a hairdresser and his father worked for the Post Office. One of his earliest performances was at the age of 16 when he played the Cowardly Lion in a school production of The Wizard of Oz and a teacher persuaded him to take up acting. Despite aspirations to join the army, he went on to attend RADA and later joined the Royal Shakespeare Company, where he stayed for two years.
Timothy became a recognisable face when he appeared in the popular television comedy / drama Auf Wiedersehen, Pet in 1983 playing Brummie builder Barry Taylor. In 1993, he played the lead role in the ITV show Frank Stubbs Presents. Other highly successful television appearances include his performance as teacher Malcolm Harvey in the BBC's Mr Harvey Lights a Candle, as Kevin Costello in the ITV comedy Outside Edge and as Mr. Venus in the Dickens drama Our Mutual Friend.
He has also found great success in many popular films. In 1996 he appeared in Mike Leigh's multi-award winning movie Secrets And Lives. Other Mike Leigh films Timothy has starred in include Life Is Sweet and Topsy-Turvy., where he played the central character Richard Temple. He also put in a superb supporting role in the 2002 production of Nicholas Nickleby when he played kind hearted Charles Cheeryble.
Timothy married Shane in 1981 and they have three children: Pascale (born 1976), Rafe (born in 1983), and Mercedes (born 1985).
On New Year's Eve in 1999, Timothy was made an Officer of the Order of British Empire by Queen Elizabeth The Second.
He was diagnosed with leukaemia in 1996 but is now recovered.