Sir Alan Arthur Bates CBE (17 February 1934 – 27 December 2003) was an English actor, perhaps best known for the firm Women in Love directed by Ken Russell in the role of Rupert Birkin. This film also starred Oliver Reed as Gerald, Glenda Jackson as Gudrun and Jennie Linden as her sister Ursula.
Bates was born in Allestree, Derby, Derbyshire, England on 17 February 1934, the eldest of three sons of Florence Mary (née Wheatcroft), a housewife and a pianist, and Harold Arthur Bates, an insurance broker and a cellist. The family briefly moved to Mickleover, then returned to Allestree.
Both of his parents were amateur musicians, and encouraged him to pursue music, but by age 11, young Bates already had determined his life's course as an actor, and so they sent him for dramatic coaching instead. He also saw productions at Derby's Little Theatre.