Today it is Douglas Wilmer- who was my very first Sherlock Holmes. Did I read the stories before I saw Wilmer on TV- or is it the other way round? I don't remember, but Wilmer was very good and it's entirely possible that it was he who fired my enthusiasm for Holmes and Doyle and everything to do with the two of them. I remember him as energetic and impish, with a Watson-bamboozling twinkle in his eye. Later he was rather put in the shade by Jeremy Brett- but there's no shame in that because Brett puts everyone- including Rathbone and Cumberbatch- in the shade. In between Wilmer and Brett came Peter Cushing- a bigger name than either- who inherited Wilmer's Watson- the delightful Nigel Stock- but was simply- sadly- too old for the role and didn't really do a great deal with it.
A lot of early TV got wiped but I've just been online to check and it seems Wilmer's Holmes survives and can be accessed on DVD. That's good news. I doubt if I'll access him myself because sometimes it's sweeter to leave one's memories as they are- unrefreshed- with their sweet, dusty, nostril-tickling aroma.