How tall was Dennis Waterman

Dennis Waterman's Height

5ft 9 (175.3 cm)

English actor best remembered for roles in TV series The Sweeney, Minder and New Tricks. On his Spotlight resume page, he had himself listed as "Height: 5'10" (177cm)" and "Weight: 12st. (76kg)", although in the 1990's had "Height 5 feet 9 inches" listed.

How tall is Dennis Waterman
Amanda Redman (3" heels) & Dennis @ Galaxy British Book Awards, 2007
Photo © / Can Nguyen/Landmark Media

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Add a Comment63 comments

Average Guess (29 Votes)
5ft 9.22in (175.8cm)
Rory said on 5/Sep/23
Rob,is a fraction over 5ft9 possible for Dennis at 36min 30 with Ian mcelhinney ? I don't think he was over 5ft 9 Dennis, but it just goes to show any notion of 5ft7 etc is nonsense.

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Editor Rob
To me it seemed near 2 inches, wouldn't go under 5ft 9 for Dennis.
Rory said on 4/Sep/23
Dennis definitely wasn't short,a solid average for his generation. He only looked 2 inches shorter than Michael La Valiant in a recent episode of Minder I saw,I also think he edged Michael Aspel on his show so I think a decent enough 5ft9 peak when stood well. In the last series of New Tricks though I think he could look as low as 5ft7.5 at times by then.
Sandy Cowell said on 29/Apr/23
@ Slamo - The show Spitting Image showed Den to be weeny! They had him sitting in an enormous chair, making him look like a small child, so I expected to find around 5ft6 for him. Why did that show take the pee so much out of smallness? It’s particularly offensive when the ‘victim’ isn’t even short!

5ft9.25. 🕯
Leesheff1985 said on 30/Mar/23
John that's ridiculous your saying Johnny Depp is under 5ft 6?? I think you've under measured yourself by quite a bit
John Winn said on 21/Mar/23
I met Dennis Waterman while he was filming 'A Captains Tale' around 1980. I stood next to him at a bar, he was no more than 5'6". I've also stood face to face with Johnny Depp & he's even shorter.
Slamo said on 15/Feb/23
5-8.5 peak. Wasn’t tall at all.
Rory said on 26/Nov/22
5ft7 peak is nonsense,although by his last years he potentially could have been that low, but 70s/80s Dennis was no less than 5ft8.75. In an episode of the sweeney actor Paul Freeman was in,I felt Dennis looked the taller.
Sandy Cowell said on 25/Nov/22
I had no idea that Dennis had passed on. What a terrible shame. I read stiggles’ comment on Latest Comments. Every sympathy to his actress daughter, Hannah, and all those who loved him.


RIP Dennis Waterman XXX
(24th February, 1948 - 8th May, 2022).
stiggles said on 24/Nov/22
No more than 5ft 7 for D W .. R.I.P.
Editor Rob
The other day I caught some of a classic Minder, Ian McShane turns up and I'm pretty sure was looking up a bit to Denis. Be shocked if Waterman was only 5ft 7.
MarkM said on 19/Jul/22
Dennis always seemed taller to me, about 5ft11, and it was only after watching the funny Little Britain sketches about his size that I realised he was just average height for the time, around 5ft9. He had a large presence as Minder and was convincing as a tough guy, maybe that helped.
Rory said on 19/Jun/22
Sad loss,underrated actor. You can't imagine anyone else playing roles like George Carter or Terry McCann. 5ft9 listing is still fair but he might have fallen just short of it too.
Sinclair said on 8/May/22
RIP to an honest 5’9” bloke once upon a time.
Rampage(-_-_-)Clover said on 8/May/22
RIP Denis
Frank Col said on 13/Nov/21
I met Waterman in 1983 at a local fair when I was 18 and he was 5ft 9, the same height as me. I saw him again in London in 2015 and he had lost height and was now clearly shorter than me at about 5ft 7 which is what I would put him at now. Minder at its best was genius with the actors and writing impeccable.
Rory said on 5/Aug/21
I think 5ft8.5 is a little harsh for Waterman. Its not impossible, but its probably the lowest he could possibly have been, i think there is a strong case for 5ft8.75 though. 5ft8.75/5ft9 range guy is probably his range, either or. In his days in The Sweeney/minder about 5ft9 is what he looked, bang on average height for his generation,never looked a short guy to me.
Miss Sandy Cowell said on 13/May/21
Ha ha! I'm still affected by a sketch on an 80s comedy show in which Dennis was sitting in a huge chair and looked like he was the size of a three-year-old! Read on...

This evening, I went to sleep while 'The Sweeney' was on and I dreamt I was scampering around with Dennis Waterman and John Thaw. Neither seemed very tall, and I know that John will have been his full 5ft9 those days. When I woke up, I saw the end of 'The Sweeney', and John looked at least 2-3" taller than Dennis, so I thought I should amble over to Den's page and see whether he really was around the short height that I saw in my dream.

It must have been the camera angle because I'm really surprised to find 5ft9 here. My friend Vivian Mann, who was around 6ft, with a 6ft4 lookalike brother named Julian, was an actor who appeared in 'Minder' and 'The Bill', and in the unlikely event that I should ever bump into him again to ask him his opinion, I'll be forever wondering why Dennis was made fun of to the degree he was, because I didn't expect to find more than around 5ft6.5-7. In my dream, he was 5ft4.5, and John wasn't much taller. Dreams are funny things, wherein all sorts of fragments from your past get a look-in!

5ft8.5 peak; 5ft7.5 now. Yes, I'm still taken in, it would seem.
Rory said on 2/Apr/21
Watching Minder the other day and he appeared near Peter Capaldi as well as Patrick Malahide and he didnt look under 5ft9 range with those guys. 5ft6/7/8 is garbage. Id say his possible range is 5ft8.5 the very lowest and 5ft9.25 most, hed measure somewhere in there.
Covvvid1984. said on 11/Mar/21
I’d put him @ 5-7.75.
Paul Nicholson said on 6/Sep/20
my wife met him years ago and she says he's tiny. She's 5'6" and he was the same height.
Gladstone Screwer said on 6/Apr/20
I'd say 5'9" at peak, 5'8" today. In the Sweeney, Thaw wore awful seventies shoes with massive heels. And I mean like three inches !
Top actors both, to be fair.
Graham obrien . said on 30/Sep/19
Dennis .easy 5ft 8 nower days .dennis if you ever in southwales .pls email me .great actor .
Rory said on 4/Aug/19
I used to think weak 5ft9 range but I think now a decent 5ft9 in his prime.
Colin brown said on 25/Dec/17
How did he play a minder too short
Markymark said on 11/Aug/17
5' 9 and a half PEAK. Episodes of Minder when he's standing with George Cole (5' 8"?) Waterman is clearly at least an inch or two taller. I believe they didn't wear lifts or anything like that!
Rory said on 24/Feb/17
Both Thaw and Waterman were somewhere in that 5'8.5 - 5'8.75 region in the 70s/80s. Today Waterman probably struggles with 5'7.5. Loved all his shows though, and he brought energy to all his roles.
Rory said on 13/Oct/16
5'8.5 peak, looked that in Minder next to guys like billy Murray,Ray winstone and Pete postlewaite. I think whilst 5'9 isn't unreasonable, I'd wager it's more a morning measurement.
Rory said on 19/Apr/16
A weak 5'9 peak I think is spot on, most recently though he can look 5'7-8 range.
James said on 18/Apr/16
He was never 5'10".
graham obrien. said on 5/Apr/16
Dennis he is easy .5ft 9 to 5ft 10. Any one who says he's 5ft 6. Are way out .
Frank said on 22/Jan/16
I met george cole some years ago,he was around the 5 foot 8 mark,i'd imagine he was 5 foot 10 in his youth when he was flash harry
Rory said on 6/Oct/15
He probably was never a solid 5'9, but wasn't under 5'8.5 peak either..5'8.75 for Thaw and Waterman seems sound.
Larry said on 19/Sep/15
Waterman was clearly never 5'9". I wonder if both he and John Thaw wore built up shoes in "The Sweeney"?
Rory said on 11/Dec/14
In one of the minder episodes is virtually the same height as billy murray listed 5'8.25 peak, Waterman maybe edges him but peak im not sure he was above 5'8.5.
a giant among men said on 27/Jun/14
I once met Dennis Waterman at a football match, I was expecting him to be quite tall considering the hard man roles he played in his early career. I managed to get myself stood next to him at the bar but was disappointed to find he was smaller than me. I am 5'7" so any talk of him being 5'9 to 5'11 is untrue This was in the early 90's
Johnny said on 10/Jan/14
Met him last night and he is about same height as me 5'8
Ciaran said on 21/Dec/13
When Waterman was walking next to Thaw in the first "Sweeney" movie he looked shorter than Thaw.
Gus said on 22/Feb/13
I think peak,5'9,now 5'8-5'8.5.He appeared the same height or half an inch taller that john thaw,though i think john wore heals so could have been around 5'7/5'8 range barefoot.
Copnovelist195 said on 9/Nov/12
An acting friend of mine puts him at about 5ft6 and he's worked with him in the last couple of years. His New Tricks co-star, Amanda Redman is listed as 5ft6 and she looks taller than him, albeit in heels.
SmoothFlow said on 28/Oct/12
He definitely looked taller than 5'8 in the sweeney and minder, could be that he is 5'10. That seems more realistic. Little Britain did a sketch of him, but David Walliams should look at parodying his own career, as he's the one that's washed up now. Glad to see Waterman in a hit show again.
Only me said on 15/Oct/12
In the Sweeney he always looked taller than John Thaw who is also billed as 5ft 9ins. So, if thaw actually was 5ft 9ins. then Waterman was at least 5ft 11ins.
theenforcer22 said on 2/Dec/11
He looks tiny in the Little Britain sketches....
mike mcgrath said on 1/Apr/11
Looking now at New Tricks I reckon that 5ft 8/9 is about right. However in around 87 I walked past Dennis Waterman and Rula Lenska at South Bank and he seemed taller than that at the time I ,(who being about on the same low side of average height myself), would have put him about 5ft 10/11 in any event he certainly had physical presence as did Rula Lenska.
james said on 20/Mar/11
Waterman did not wear lifts in the 70's in some vain attempt to be taller, that was just fashion. Go forward to the great series minder 80's,he always wore flat shoes so he had no hang up about his height. He was also consistently 0.5 to 1 inch taller than 5'9" George Cole so go figure. The 5'7" is wrong no disrespect to doorman,could have been standing on lower ground or wearing less heel than you, also checkout pic with George best who was 5'8" footballers heights generally very accurate. My best estimate is 5'8 1/2 to 5'9" if George coles height is slightly inflated
Cuban said on 18/Feb/11
Waterman is the governor. He is obviously not a tall man and that's one of the good things about him. I'm no long drink of water either. Anyone who thinks that being 5, 9 is somehow harder and tougher than being 5, 7 is a lunatic. God bless Dennis Waterman.
Richard Starkey said on 12/Feb/11
Dennis Waterman is NOT 5ft7- stand on me!! He presented me with player of the year in Lambeth around 1980. I am 5ft9 and he was exactly the same height as me. Unless he wears build-ups?
Jenny said on 8/Jan/11
There is such a thing as cuban heels (about 2 inches high) which lots of actors in the 70s/80s wore. I don't know how tall he is but its possible he wore them
lil old mr nutkin said on 14/Nov/10
To Greg and Rudeboy, believe me, I met him at a Leeds United game. He was in the city filming a TV series for Yorkshire Television. Now read this very carefully and stop your guessing and summising for this is FACT!!!
I am 5 feet 7 inches. I met Dennis Waterman in the early 90s. He is shorter than me!!! I know this because I stood next to him chatting. He IS NOT 5 feet 9 inches or anything like that. He is no more than 5 feet 6 inches. I will repeat just in case you are having a problem accepting the truth. I am 5' 7", I met DW, he is shorter than me and is no more than 5' 6". Finally you say he cant be hardman if hes 5' 6", well as I said I'm 5' 7" and work as a doorman.
east meets west said on 5/Apr/09
5'9" is being very generous for Waterman. I met him years ago (with his then wife, Rula Lenska, who looked taller than him) and although I was wearing high heels at the time, at 5'4" in my bare feet I would still have been no more than 5'7" in those shoes, and he was barely taller than me. I'd have put him at 5'8" at a push.
Middle-sized Cat said on 4/Sep/08
I still plump for 5'9" for Dennis Waterman. He was the same height as George Cole - look at any Minder DVD - and Mr Cole is (gasp) 5'9".
TiggerLover said on 18/Aug/08
5'6 to Mr. Waterman!!!
Bleemo said on 10/Jun/07
This is a weird one, Amanda Redman ho is billed as and looks 5'6" looking maybe an inch taller then waterman. I mean ok she'll be wearing heels but he's not going to be barefoot, 5'9 is a slight exaggeration I'd say 5'8ish. Alun Armstrong looks really tall on that show yet is only 5'11.

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Editor Rob
oh, yeah shrunk, current height I better give him although Redman claims herself to be 5ft 8, I gave her 5ft 7.5 on here
LeeM said on 24/May/07
So If Dennis is 5'9, how tall is George Cole or even Gary Webster (Ray Daley)?
John D said on 2/Mar/07
Dennis Waterman is 5'9" I am a 5'8" Welterweight boxer and sprred him a few times. He was about an inch taller then me. A decent boxer too
Robert.R said on 17/Jan/07
I read an article which stated he was 5'7" about fifteen years ago. I wouldn't say he was as short as 5'6" but then again I have not seen him recently, I suppose he could have lost an inch over the years.
Stefan said on 17/Jan/07
Hi when are you going to post my comment ? As I have said previously as a fan of DWs work. I have been fortunate enough to meet him on several occasions. I don't think I would put him any higher than 5'6" !!

Editor Rob
5ft 6?!?, if you bring forth a picture showing this...
Stefan said on 15/Jan/07
I'm a huge fan of Dennis Waterman and have met him many times and I would say he barely comes in at 5ft 6.
Hugh said on 7/Dec/06
Mr Waterman is portrayed on 'Little Britain' as being tiny. However, when interviewed, David Walliams said that this was because on meeting Waterman, he was surprised to notice that he was average height and not a huge tough guy as he had expected. Mr Waterman on the Jonathan Ross show said 'I don't know why they portray me as short because I'm not'. As he played a policeman in the era when the height restriction was 5'8", he'd need to look at least this tall on screen.
Labiche said on 26/Sep/06
Wor lass met him in tuxedo Junction (a Newcastle nightclub) many years ago and confirms that he was definitely on the short side - possibly not even up to 5'6"! She also noted his particularly badly blemished complexion.
liz said on 16/May/06
not sure about his height but he was handsome in his younger day! saw him on New Tricks - the teeth not so good...
Bob Hinton said on 10/May/06
I met Dennis and his wife Rula Lenska in Lincoln years ago, he is nowhere near as tall as Rula, and he is shorter than me. I would estimate about 5' 6"
Patricia Hackett said on 3/May/06
I saw him on stage once & he looked shorter than 5' 9" but, hey, forget the height what's he done to his teeth!!!! Saw him on Jonathan Ross & I couldn't believe it. I'd sue the dentist!
CelebHeights Editor said on 6/Feb/06
Denis and George Best who maybe wasn't quite the 5ft 9 of his playing days.
sue said on 9/Dec/05
I met Dennis Waterman once in a pub and he was nowhere near as tall as me. I am 5'9" tall and I was amazed. I thought that John Thaw must also have been quite short as in the Sweeney he was shorter that Waterman. I would estimate Waterman as being around 5'6" tall.

Heights are barefeet estimates, derived from quotations, official websites, agency resumes, in person encounters with actors at conventions and pictures/films.

Other vital statistics like weight or shoe size measurements have been sourced from newspapers, books, resumes or social media.

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