ACTOR, comedian and author David Walliams has discovered his Salisbury roots and that entertaining runs in the family.

The Britain’s Got Talent judge features in the star-studded line up of the latest series of BBC One’s Who Do You Think You Are? 

For those who may have missed it, the episode, which aired late last year, is still available to watch online on iPlayer.

From his hometown in Surrey to the First World War Battlefields in Belgium, Walliams goes on a journey to find out more about his great-great grandfather, William Haines who, after becoming blind, forged a career as a travelling entertainer.

Salisbury links

In the episode, Walliams travels to the city to find out more about these local links on his mother's side of the family and starts this leg of his journey at the old general infirmary where William had been a patient and treated for a cataract. But later he lost his sight.

Records also showed that Walliams' great-grandfather Alfred Walter Haines, who lived on Rampart Road, married his wife Kate Page at the Parish Church of St Martin’s Church, Salisbury.

From blind musician to travelling showman

William Haines and his wife Julia had six children, including Walliams' great-grandfather Alfred Walter Haines.

William became a musician - playing the barrel organ on the docks and streets of Portsmouth.

Then according to 1911 census records he goes onto become a travelling showman, running fairground attractions.

'Being an entertainer runs in the family'

David Walliams said: “I’m delighted to have taken part in the series.

"I started off the journey knowing very little about my ancestry.

"In making the programme I found out lots of family history I would never have learned of.

"I was pleased to discover being an entertainer runs in the family.”

Experiences of the First World War

Walliams also uncovers a more tragic story surrounding his paternal great grandfather’s experiences following the First World War and his struggles with shell shock.

Other celebrities featuring in Series 17

The series, produced by Wall To Wall, also features Doctor Who star Jodie Whittaker, Gavin and Stacey’s Ruth Jones and Liz Carr from Silent Witness.

How to watch the episode and latest series

The episode and the series is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.