This week I have decided to concentrate on one star from Hollywood's golden era, who although he has been dead for nearly 60 years remains a famous name.

Errol Flynn was the ultimate screen swashbuckler and is still remembered for his 1930s films such The Adventures Of Robin Hood and Captain Blood, not to mention his off-screen adventures.

However, not a lot of people know that Errol made four movies in the space of a couple of years in the mid 1950s at Elstree Studios and at one time his parents lived in St Albans.

Errol started his acting career in England during the early 1930s and was spotted by Warner Bros, who took him to Tinseltown and signed him to a long-term contract. The British actor Robert Donat pulled out of starring in Captain Blood, the studio took a chance on the unknown and he was instantly shot to stardom.

Perhaps success came too quickly or too easily, as Errol soon developed a reputation as a hellraiser and heavy drinker, at one time sharing a house with David Niven, which was nicknamed Cirrhosis-by-the-Sea. David once told me: "Errol was determined to live life in the fast lane and had no desire to grow old. He liked to experiment, saying you should try everything at least once. I served in the Second World War but Errol was registered as unfit for service due to a weak heart and bouts of malaria. Warner Bros had to keep it quiet as on screen you saw this tall, handsome, athletic young man."

Errol but have been embarrassed and was a source of jokes for not joining the military, but in those days a star's screen image was protected to ensure they remained box office.

Alas, his private life began a downward drift from the 1940s as he was already a heavy smoker and drinker, but he then developed a drug habit, none of which aided his health.

He was arrested on a rape charge but was found innocent, and installed two way mirrors in the ceilings of guest bedrooms in his house for entertainment.

By the mid 1950s his Hollywood career was on the skids as his reputation for reliability and box office appeal began to decrease. British producer and director Herbert Wilcox, one time resident in Elstree, saw he could hire Flynn cheap and co- star him with his wife Anna Neagle. He did this in two films shot at Elstree Studios called King's Rhapsody and Lilacs In The Spring. I invited Dame Anna back to the studio in 1984 for what was to be her last visit. She told me: "Errol was a real charmer and was well behaved on our first film but by the second you had to film him in the mornings before he was not good. The films were not a success as my fans were not his and vice versa."

Errol made two of his last swashbucklers at Elstree and one held a long-term memory for a member of the supporting cast who later became a star. Christopher Lee told me: "I had to do a duelling scene with Flynn and we were both good sword fencers but he slipped and damaged a finger on my hand, which remains scarred to this day."

The film was called The Dark Avenger and the crew made use of the Ivanhoe castle set at nearby MGM Studios. Errol visited Hatfield House during his stay.

In 1959 Errol visited Vancouver and during the visit suffered a fatal heart attack at the age of only 50. They buried him in a famous Hollywood cemetery against his wishes and his grave went unmarked for a number of years. Tragically his son Sean, who had inherited his good looks, became a freelance photographer in war-torn Vietnam and Cambodia and was murdered at the age of 30.

Errol is one of just a handful of stars from Hollywood's golden era still to be remembered. The coroner said his body was that of an old man so perhaps he was right in saying "live your first 50 years to the maximum because the remainder are just a downward journey" - but hopefully not!