Jack Smethurst made his film debut in 1958's Carry On Sergeant. This was followed by parts in the films Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (1960), A Kind of Loving (1962), Run with the Wind (1966), Night After Night After Night (1970), the big-screen version of Please Sir! (1971) and the ITV sitcom For the Love of Ada (1970–71) amongst others, before he landed the role for which he is best known – that of bigoted socialist and union leader, 'brother' Eddie Booth in Love Thy Neighbour. The programme ran for eight series between 1972 and 1976. During this run he also appeared in the 1974 film version of the sitcom Man About the House.
After Love Thy Neighbour ended, his film appearances have been few and far between, but include Chariots of Fire (1981), the John Goodman vehicle King Ralph (1991) (which re-united him with his Love Thy Neighbour co-star Rudolph Walker) and 1996's La Passione.
He made several appearances as Davenport in Britain's longest-running television sitcom Last of the Summer Wine in 1997.
He has played four different characters in Coronation Street: a brewery drayman in 1961, and in January 1967 Percy Bridge, who tried to con Elsie Tanner. Between 1980 and 1983, he occasionally appeared as Johnny Webb, one of the men on Eddie Yeats' bin round. In 2001, he returned for several months as Stan Wagstaff, a friend of Jimmy Kelly, who left his allotment to Jack Duckworth. Together with his brother Ernie, Stan let Jack in on Jimmy's big secret—he used his allotment shed to brew poteen.
He also starred in Vince Powell’s seven-part BBC Radio 2 slice-of-life sitcom A Proper Charlie in 1984, as factory worker Charlie Garside. Madge Hindle played his wife with Jane Hazlegrove and Jason Littler as their daughter and son. A second series of eight episodes followed at the end of 1985.
He worked on stage in Australia when he appeared in the play Run for Your Wife during 1987 and 1988, and the production toured the country. Other members of the cast were David McCallum, Eric Sykes and Katy Manning. Smethurst regularly works in the theatre, recently touring with a production of Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None.
Jack played the "Man in Phone Box" in S5/Ep08 (1995) of the British 1990's television comedy Keeping up Appearances. In this episode, Hyacinth Bucket tries to get Jack's character to relinquish a public telephone booth, which leads her husband, Richard, to yell at her forcefully for the one and only time in the entire series.
|1958||Carry On Sergeant||First Recruit|
|1960||Watch Your Stern||Sailor|
|1960||Saturday Night and Sunday Morning||Waiter||Uncredited|
|1961||On the Fiddle||Dai Tovey|
|1962||A Kind of Loving||Conroy|
|1964||The Main Chance||Ross|
|1966||Doctor in Clover||Long-Haired Patient||Uncredited|
|1966||Run with the Wind||Bernie|
|1969||Night After Night After Night||Chief Inspector|
|1971||Please Sir!||Bus Driver|
|1971||The Yes Girls||Sam Hed - detective|
|1972||For the Love of Ada||Leslie Pollitt|
|1973||Love Thy Neighbour||Eddie Booth|
|1974||Man About the House||Jack Smethurst|
|1981||Chariots of Fire||Sleeping Car Attendant|
|1991||King Ralph||Miranda's Father|
|1996||La Passione||Mickey O'Farrell|
|1998||Dinnerladies||Bob Bellfield (Dolly's Husband)|
- "Jack Smethurst".
- "Love Thy Neighbour – ITV Sitcom – British Comedy Guide". British Comedy Guide.
- "BFI Screenonline: Kind of Loving, A (1962)". www.screenonline.org.uk.
- "BFI Screenonline: Love Thy Neighbour (1972–76)". www.screenonline.org.uk.
- "Man about the House (1974)". bfi.org.uk.
- "Deviations with Davenport (1997)". bfi.org.uk.