William Thomson Hay FRAS (6 December 1888 – 18 April 1949) was a comedian, actor, author, film director and amateur astronomer who came to notice for his theatrical sketch as a jocular schoolmaster, known as Dr. Muffin.
While working as a commercial correspondent in Manchester he married, on 7 October 1907, Gladys, the eighteen-year-old daughter of Thomas Perkins, postmaster of Broughton, Salford. They had three children. Hay subsequently formed a relationship with Randi Kopstadt, a Norwegian showgirl.
The acts in which Hay performed the schoolmaster sketch became known as "The Fourth Form at St. Michael's". Hay toured with the act and appeared in the United States, Canada, Australia and South Africa.
He famously performed the schoolmaster routine at the 1925 Royal Command Performance before King George V and Queen Mary. From 1934 to 1943, he was a prolific film star in Britain, and was ranked the third highest grossing star at the British Box Office in 1938, behind George Formby and Gracie Fields.
Resident of 45 The Chase,Norbury and Pollards Hill SW16 and buried at Streatham Park Cemetery
© Estate of John Gilroy; collection National Portrait Gallery,