Sarah Lancashire
British actress
Sarah Lancashire
Sarah Lancashire is an English actress, probably best recognised for her role as Raquel Watts in Coronation Street. She graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1986.
Biography
Sarah Lancashire's personal information overview.
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Relationships
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News
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'Last Tango in Halifax' review: Elderly romance
San Francisco Chronicle - over 3 years
Created and written by Sally Wainwright, and based in part on her mother's late-in-life second marriage, "Halifax" is about two elderly people who knew each other as teenagers, reconnect after 60 years and decide to get married, much to the initial displeasure of their dysfunctional families. First her kids find out about the affair, and then he gets beaten up by his real girlfriend's brother and ends up being "The Man Who Came to Dinner" at Gillian's house. [...] Celia's daughter, Caroline (Sarah Lancashire, "Wuthering Heights"), is more or less separated from her husband, John (Tony Gardner, "Fresh Meat"), who has been having an alcohol-fueled affair with loose cannon Judith (Ronni Ancona, "Skins"). [...] Halifax" has winning elements of screwball comedy, but anchored by deeply felt characterizations. While this revelation somewhat works as a plot mechanism, it's one of the few weak spots in the script simply because it's not believable, given what we already know about the chara ...
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San Francisco Chronicle article
New BBC drama ‘The Paradise’ & Oxford World’s Classics
Oxford University Press Blog - over 4 years
Tonight sees the start of a major new drama series on BBC 1, The Paradise. Adapted from Zola’s novel The Ladies’ Paradise (Au Bonheur des Dames) and set against the backdrop of the spectacular rise of the department store in the 1860s and 70s, the story follows the fortunes of a young girl from the provinces who starts work as a salesgirl in the shop, and her entanglement with the charismatic owner. The model for the store in Zola’s novel, set in Paris, is the Bon Marché, but there were parallel developments in the explosion of retail opportunities in the United States and England, and the BBC has relocated the action to the north of England. There is a great cast of characters, a powerful love story, all the social intrigue of the staff’s relationships and rivalries, as well as some fascinating comparisons with modern-day retail practices: Mouret (Moray in the television adaptation), the business genius behind the shop’s success, is an arch manipulator who uses every marketing tr ...
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Oxford University Press Blog article
CRITIC'S NOTEBOOK; A Tale of Pork in Austere Times
NYTimes - over 5 years
LONDON - Never let it be said that the pig is not a lady. Yes, the title character of ''Betty Blue Eyes,'' the slyly winning new musical at the Ivor Novello Theater, is irrefutably porcine. She emits odors that cause everyone around her to gag, and you do need to watch where you step after she's been in the room. Yet this over-size porker has a
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NYTimes article
London Theater Journal: A Pig That Would Make a Playwright Proud - New York Times (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
The story remains that of a meek, small-town chiropodist, Gilbert Chilvers (Reece Shearsmith, in the part played on screen by Michael Palin), and his ambitious wife, Joyce (Sarah Lancashire, in the Maggie Smith role), who commit an unlikely crime in
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Google News article
Win 2 top price tickets to BETTY BLUE EYES and an overnight stay at the ... - handbag.com
Google News - over 5 years
Sarah Lancashire and Reece Shearsmith lead a marvellous cast including, Ann Emery, Jack Edwards, Mark Meadows, Olivier Award winners Adrian Scarborough and David Bamber and, of course, Betty as herself
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Google News article
Celebrity supporters back Surbiton pensioner's charity walk - Surrey Comet
Google News - over 5 years
The 66-year-old's sponsorship money was boosted by Coronation street actress Sarah Lancashire and the English star John Hurt, who has starred in films including Harry Potter. The money will go towards Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital,
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Google News article
Haven't I seen you on TV? - FHR Travel Services
Google News - over 5 years
How are famous television actors and actresses such as David Tennant, Sarah Lancashire and Amanda Holden faring with roles in big West End theatre shows? Some actors and actresses are made to perform on TV and on the stage. For others, however, it is a
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Google News article
Sarah Lancashire hits out at reality TV and The Only Way Is Essex - Unreality TV (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
The former Coronation Street actress is now starring on the West End and has also made appearances on shows such as Doctor Who and Rose and Maloney and confessed that when The Only Way Is Essex won an award at the recent BAFTA ceremony,
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Google News article
Tanya whacked over affair with Max - News of the World
Google News - over 5 years
SOAP legend Sarah Lancashire has lashed out at today's TV reality shows, saying their stars don't deserve to be called actors. It has been 12 years since Sarah, now in the West End, played Rovers Return barmaid Raquel Watts in Corrie
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Google News article
New theatre breaks from Newmarket Holidays! - WebWire (press release)
Google News - over 5 years
Headed by a marvellous cast of actors including Sarah Lancashire, this very British show boasts a deliciously infectious score and a host of hilariously eccentric characters. All of Newmarket's London theatre breaks include the services of a
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Google News article
London prepares for West End LIVE - London Theatre Guide
Google News - over 5 years
Stars including Betty Blue Eyes's Sarah Lancashire, Legally Blonde The Musical's Lee Mead, The Wizard Of Oz's Danielle Hope, and former X-Factor winner Shayne Ward, who will make his West End debut in Rock Of Ages later this year, will take to the
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Google News article
Coronation Street: will Michelle Collins fit in? - The Guardian (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
A pitiful few ever shake off their soap roles: Sarah Lancashire, Anna Friel, Tamzin Outhwaite and Suranne Jones, all females who only stayed in soaps for a handful of years, are arguably the only recent examples. Let's not pretend Ross Kemp counts
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Google News article
Catholic girl wins place at top drama school - Independent Catholic News
Google News - over 5 years
The teenager will be following in the footsteps of stars such as Ewan McGregor, Daniel Craig and Sarah Lancashire. "I am over the moon," said Rosemary, a former pupil of St Thomas More Catholic Comprehensive in Eltham. "The auditions for Guildhall were
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Google News article
Niezwykła przyroda w lipcu w BBC HD - Media2.pl
Google News - over 5 years
Żona Michaela - Esther (Sarah Lancashire) - jest sekretarzem chóru i pierwszym sopranem. Ale gdy w mieście pojawia się piękna i utalentowana sopranistka - Layla (Sarah Alexander) - życie Michaela ulega całkowitej zmianie
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Google News article
EXCITEMENT has been building at Langar Hall as it prepares to host the wedding ... - This is Nottingham
Google News - over 5 years
"We're no stranger to hosting big weddings at Langar Hall – we had Sarah Lancashire get married here in 2001. "Our top priority is making sure they feel welcomed and giving them the best wedding possible." The couple have decided to forego gifts for
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Google News article
The other wedding of the century? - The Independent
Google News - over 5 years
More recently, the Tottenham Hotspur centre back Michael Dawson tied the knot there, as (going further back) did the actress Sarah Lancashire, known for her Coronation Street role as Raquel Watts, who brought with her a throng of soap stars of the late
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Google News article
We're off to see best of the West End in Trafalgar Square - Evening Standard
Google News - almost 6 years
Sarah Lancashire, star of the musical Betty Blue Eyes, will be taking part with co-stars including the League of Gentleman's Reece Shearsmith. "I've never been involved before but it sounds like a wonderful event where everyone has a great time," she
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Google News article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Sarah Lancashire
    FIFTIES
  • 2016
    Age 51
    Lancashire appeared in the 2016 feature film Dad's Army, based on the situation comedy series of the same name.
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  • 2015
    Age 50
    In June 2015 she was named Best Actress in a Drama Series at the 2015 Monte Carlo Television Festival.
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    In April 2015 she received her fourth BAFTA television nomination, her first in the Best Actress category.
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    In the teleplay, which aired in October 2015, Lancashire portrayed stage manager Madge, whose unrequited love for 'Sir' (Anthony Hopkins), the head of a repertory theatre company, pits her at odds with his dresser and confidant, Norman (Ian McKellen).
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    In March 2015 Lancashire began filming a television adaptation of Ronald Harwoods 1980 play The Dresser.
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  • FORTIES
  • 2014
    Age 49
    In September 2014 the Radio Times listed her as one of the thirty most powerful women in British television and radio.
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    For this role she earned the TV Choice Award for Best Actress in 2014, and the Royal Television Programme Award for Best Actress in 2015.
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    In 2014, Lancashire collaborated again with Last Tango in Halifax writer Sally Wainwright in the crime drama series Happy Valley.
    More Details Hide Details Wainwright was keen to write another role for Lancashire after being "blown away" by her performances in Last Tango in Halifax. Lancashire portrays single-grandparent Catherine Cawood, a police sergeant still dealing with the aftermath of her daughter's rape, and subsequent suicide, eight years earlier. Mark Lawson of The Guardian identified the performance as a career best for Lancashire, stating that she perfectly conveyed "the script's demandingly contradictory notes of tragedy, comedy, love, guilt, weakness and courage".
  • 2013
    Age 48
    For her role as Caroline she was nominated for the British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in both 2013 and 2014, winning in 2014.
    More Details Hide Details At the 2015 Hay Festival Lancashire stated that of all the roles she has taken on in her career Caroline is the one she is most proud of, citing the "extraordinary impact" of the character.
  • 2012
    Age 47
    In September 2012 Lancashire began appearing as Head of Ladieswear Miss Audrey in the six-part series The Paradise set in a department store in Northern England in the late 19th century.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire described her character as "a true archetypal spinster" who has long denied herself a romantic life and who begins to feel undermined by a younger colleague. Since November 2012 Lancashire has appeared opposite Anne Reid and Derek Jacobi in the BBC drama series Last Tango in Halifax. In the series she plays Caroline, an Oxford-educated headmistress who feels that her mother's second marriage gives her "permission" to be herself. Caroline's same-sex relationship with a fellow teacher resulted in Lancashire receiving more fan mail than for any other role, largely from women telling her that the series had helped them to come out. Due to the under-representation of gay characters in television, Lancashire felt it particularly important that Caroline's experience would not be depicted inaccurately. In her portrayal she opted to focus on the "humanity" of the character, rather than her sexuality. Filming of the second series clashed with filming of the second series of The Paradise, which necessitated Lancashire leaving The Paradise partway through its second series.
    In 2012 she appeared as lady's maid Miss Whisset in the penultimate episode of the 2010 revival of Upstairs Downstairs.
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  • 2011
    Age 46
    In March 2011 Lancashire began starring in a new Cameron Mackintosh musical, Betty Blue Eyes, at the Novello Theatre.
    More Details Hide Details In the production, a loose adaptation of the 1984 film A Private Function, she starred as Joyce Chilvers, an aspirational housewife who Lancashire describes as "brittle" and "capricious". Despite positive reviews the musical closed in London on 24 September 2011, after a run of just six months. For her performance Lancashire was nominated for the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical.
  • 2010
    Age 45
    Also in 2010 she guest-starred in the police drama series Inspector George Gently.
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    In 2010 Lancashire portrayed Rosemary Nicholls, mother of a murder victim, in the three-part BBC drama Five Daughters; a depiction of the Ipswich serial murders from the perspective of the victims and their families.
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  • 2009
    Age 44
    Following this, she reunited with director Coky Giedroyc, who had directed her in Oliver Twist, for a 2009 television adaptation of Emily Brontë's 1847 novel Wuthering Heights in which she played housekeeper Nelly Dean.
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    In 2009, Lancashire starred in the BBC One musical drama series All the Small Things.
    More Details Hide Details She played Esther Caddick, a full-time mother who starts a choir after her husband leaves her for a more glamorous woman. In July that year the actress was made a honorary Doctor of Letters by the University of Huddersfield.
  • 2008
    Age 43
    In April, she appeared in the opening episode of the 2008 series of Doctor Who, as "an enigmatic and powerful businesswoman" who Lancashire described as a "warped Mary Poppins".
    More Details Hide Details She was amongst a number of high-profile actors the series' executive producer Russell T Davies secured for the fourth series of the science-fiction drama as part of his intention to make it "bigger and blowsier".
    Between 2008 and 2011 Lancashire narrated the BBC One series Lark Rise to Candleford, a costume drama based on Flora Thompson's memoir of her Oxfordshire childhood in the 1880s.
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  • 2007
    Age 42
    In December, she played the supporting role of Mrs Corney in the BBC's 2007 adaption of Charles Dickens' 1838 novel Oliver Twist.
    More Details Hide Details Whilst ambivalent about the serial as a whole, The Daily Mirrors Jane Simon singled Lancashire out for praise stating that she "really sets the tone for the cold, unfeeling world into which orphaned Oliver is born."
    In February 2007 she made an appearance in the E4 teen drama series Skins.
    More Details Hide Details This was followed by a leading role in the BBC Two television drama Sex, the City and Me as solicitor Ruth Gilbert. In October, Lancashire appeared in her first feature film, David Nicholls' And When Did You Last See Your Father? in which she played aunt Beaty.
  • 2006
    Age 41
    Lancashire's only television acting role in 2006 was as house-wife and cake-maker Elaine in the BBC comedy drama Angel Cake.
    More Details Hide Details In November she presented an episode of the Five documentary series Disappearing Britain in which she interviewed people with memories of Wakes Week holidays in Blackpool during the early 20th century.
    Lancashire was due to stay with the production until March 2006, but due to a severe chest infection made her last appearance on 4 January.
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  • 2005
    Age 40
    In December 2005, Lancashire returned to West End theatre, taking on the role of Miss Adelaide in the Donmar Warehouse production of Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly Theatre.
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    Also in 2005 she appeared in the BBC television film Cherished as Angela Cannings, a British woman who was wrongfully convicted of killing her two baby sons.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire was proud to be involved with the project, having greatly admired Cannings strength of character during her ordeal, and being able to relate to her sense of anguish as a parent.
    In 2005 Lancashire starred in The Rotters' Club as a housewife in 1970s Birmingham.
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    The venture also earned her first British Academy Television Awards nomination in 2005 for Best new Director of Fiction.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire next filmed three two-part stories for Rose and Maloney, following on from the pilot episode in 2002. The delay between shooting for the pilot and its follow-up was a result of Lancashire's career break and problems reconciling her availability with that of co-star Phil Davis.
  • THIRTIES
  • 2004
    Age 39
    For "Viva Las Blackpool" she was given the Best Newcomer Award (sponsored by BBC Birmingham) at the Birmingham Screen Festival and the Best New Talent Award at the Royal Television Society (Midlands) awards in 2004.
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    In 2004, Lancashire made her directorial debut on the anthology series The Afternoon Play.
    More Details Hide Details Subsequent acting roles included costume dramas such as the 2007 television adaption of Oliver Twist, Lark Rise to Candleford (2008–2011) and the 2012 television series The Paradise. In 2011, she played the female lead in the musical Betty Blue Eyes, for which she received an Olivier Award nomination. For her role as Caroline in the contemporary drama series Last Tango in Halifax (2012–), Lancashire won the British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in 2014. In 2014, Lancashire earned further accolades for her leading role as sergeant Catherine Cawood in the crime thriller series Happy Valley.
  • 2003
    Age 38
    In April 2003, Lancashire gave birth to her third son, Joseph.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire's first job after returning to work was her directorial debut on an episode of the BBC One anthology series The Afternoon Play.
    Lancashire's final role to air under her ITV contract was Gertrude Morel in an adaptation of D.H. Lawrence's 1913 novel Sons and Lovers, airing in January 2003.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire felt a strong connection with the project, stating: "whatever the reason I do what I do, I felt I had come to a point where I could stop searching after this". Paul Hoggart, reviewer for The Times wrote that Lancashire "steals the show" with a "performance of immense subtlety and quiet strength, proof, if we still needed it, that she has matured into a terrific actress." While pregnant with her third child, Lancashire began an 18-month career break, the longest of her working life.
  • 2002
    Age 37
    In September 2002 she appeared in a two-part crime drama pilot, Rose and Maloney, as legal investigator Rose Linden.
    More Details Hide Details On 22 December she appeared in the television movie Birthday Girl as Rachel Jones, who plans a party to celebrate being in remission from a serious illness, only to discover that the disease has returned.
    In April 2002 Lancashire starred in the two-part psychological thriller The Cry, which she described as her "most naked role yet".
    More Details Hide Details She played a social worker grieving her second still-born child who is determined to protect a baby she perceives to be at risk of abuse. Lancashire drew on her own experiences of clinical depression in her depiction of her character's mentality. Her performance saw her awarded with a Golden Nymph award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Mini-Series at the Monte-Carlo Television Festival. In April it was reported that Lancashire had been lined up play the lead role in comedy drama Life Begins, which creator Mike Bullen had written with Lancashire in mind. However, by June, Lancashire had exited the drama, unwilling to commit to a potentially long running series. Later that month BBC News and newspaper The Guardian reported that Lancashire had exited her exclusive deal with ITV, which would not be renewed after it expired in the Autumn. The decision was reportedly influenced by Lancashire's desire to reduce her workload and to have the freedom to take on other roles.
  • 2001
    Age 36
    Salmon had proposed to Lancashire in New York during a holiday at Easter time 2001.
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    In August 2001, Lancashire married television executive Peter Salmon, in a low-key ceremony held at Langar Hall, Nottinghamshire.
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    Her first role under her new contract with ITV was the six-part drama The Glass opposite John Thaw. The series, which aired between May and June 2001 saw Lancashire star as a saleswoman for a double-glazing company who ends up caught in a love triangle with her boss and his nephew.
    More Details Hide Details Retrospectively, the series was judged not to be a success; it averaged 5.8 million viewers, less than rival show on BBC One, Messiah.
    The television film, which aired on New Year's Day 2001, was Lancashire's first in the costume drama genre; she played a housekeeper harbouring romantic feelings for her employer (Billy Connolly).
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    Lancashire felt her first marriage had also contributed to her unhappiness; in 2001, she stated that though her marriage lasted ten years, it "was 10 years longer than it should have done".
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    Recalling the circumstances of her marriage in 2001, Lancashire stated that she only married because she fell pregnant and possessed both a traditional mindset and a fear of the stigma of having a child out of wedlock.
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  • 2000
    Age 35
    The two began a romantic relationship in the summer of 2000, though they had first met several years earlier whilst she was portraying Raquel on Coronation Street and he was employed by Granada Studios, which produces the soap opera.
    More Details Hide Details In October Lancashire starred in an adaptation of the Michelle Magorian novel Back Home as Peggy Dickinson, a woman adjusting to life in post-war Britain after having been separated from her family during the war.
    Following Lancashire's success in connecting with a television audience, ITV sought to secure her exclusively to their network in a two-year golden handcuffs deal, which was finalised in July 2000.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire became the first actress to be given such a contract with ITV. The deal, worth £1.3 million, made Lancashire the highest paid actress in British Television. Discussing the exclusive signing ITV controller of drama Nick Elliott identified Lancashire as being someone with "a great range who creates a tremendous empathy with an audience". He also admitted that heavy interest in Lancashire from the BBC had been a factor in giving her the contract, and blocking her from working with other networks. Her last role on BBC One during this period was comedy drama Gentleman's Relish, an adaptation of the Miles Gibson novel Kingdom Swann.
    She was voted best actress at the TV Quick Awards in September 2000 for her roles in Clocking Off and Seeing Red, and in October was voted Most Popular Actress at the 6th National Television Awards for Seeing Red.
    More Details Hide Details In March 2001 she was named Drama Performer of the Year by the Television and Radio Industries Club, with mention of her work in Clocking Off and Seeing Red.
    Lancashire's output in 2000 earned her several awards.
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    Lancashire's final role in 2000 was in the two-part drama thriller My Fragile Heart.
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    On 2 January 2000, Lancashire returned to Coronation Street for a single episode in which Raquel asks Curly for a divorce.
    More Details Hide Details Lancashire felt it was an apt time to return, as she was now a more confident actress and wanted to portray Raquel again before she aged significantly. The series' producer at the time, Jane Macnaught, deemed Raquel one of Coronation Street most popular ever characters and her return an opportunity for her "millions of fans" to learn what had become of her. Lancashire and Kennedy were the sole actors in the episode, the first to feature just two characters. From late January, Lancashire appeared as factory employee Yvonne Kolakowski, a widow with a dysfunctional personal life, in the BBC One drama series Clocking Off. Lancashire used her own experiences as a single mother in her characterisation. In March, she played actress Coral Atkins in the television film Seeing Red. Lancashire found shooting the drama, which detailed Atkins' decision to quit her acting career in order to set up a care home for abused children, "mentally draining". Lancashire then spent eight weeks filming the BBC One legal sitcom Chambers in which she played "ambitious" and "bigoted" barrister Ruth Quirke. The series was aired from June 2000.
    In January 2000 she expanded on her decision, stating that Ruth "was too chocolate-boxy, no longer a challenge".
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  • 1999
    Age 34
    In February 1999 she made a guest appearance in the British dark comedy anthology series Murder Most Horrid alongside comedian Dawn French.
    More Details Hide Details The pair played two yachtswoman whose journey ends with fatal repercussions. In April it was announced that Lancashire would be quitting Where the Heart Is, despite an offered pay rise. At the time, Where the Heart is was the third most popular drama on British Television, regularly attracting 12 million viewers. Lancashire's decision was reportedly influenced by the series filming away from home, and a fear that remaining in the series long term would harm her career.
  • 1998
    Age 33
    In 1998 she was nominated for her second National Television Award for Most Popular Actress.
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    Lancashire continued to star as Ruth Goddard in Where the Heart Is for its second and third series in 1998 and 1999.
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  • 1997
    Age 32
    Also in 1997 she filmed a situation comedy for the BBC, Bloomin' Marvellous, in which she played Liz, one half of an argumentative married couple trying for a baby.
    More Details Hide Details However, due to poor viewing figures and a damning critical response the sitcom was not renewed. Regarding the negative reception to the series, her co-star Clive Mantle saracastically remarked "I've seen murderers and rapists get a better press than we did".
    Lancashire's next role was district nurse Ruth Goddard in the ITV drama series Where the Heart Is, which began airing in 1997.
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  • 1996
    Age 31
    Lancashire's performance in the role saw her nominated in the Most Popular Actress category at the 2nd National Television Awards in October 1996.
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    Lancashire departed Coronation Street in 1996 due to her heavy work schedule and desire to pursue other projects.
    More Details Hide Details She had also tired of the fame the role brought her, shying away from personal appearances and interviews with television magazines. Her final scenes attracted 20 million viewers.
  • 1995
    Age 30
    In December 1995 Lancashire starred in the spin-off straight-to-video film Coronation Street – The Cruise, a 75 minute special detailing Raquel and Curly's honeymoon.
    More Details Hide Details The special was advertised as being exclusive to video, and 750,000 copies were sold, to the value of £10 million.
    In 1995 she separated from Hargeaves; the pair would ultimately later divorce.
    More Details Hide Details She described leaving her marriage as a "cleansing experience" and a "renaissance"; one that enabled her to rediscover her sense of identity. Other steps that Lancashire took to combat her depression included remaining single for five years, attending therapy sessions, and taking prescriptions of the anti-depressant drug, Paroxetine.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1991
    Age 26
    Following Raquel's reintroduction on 30 December 1991, Lancashire committed herself to Coronation Street full-time.
    More Details Hide Details She would remain in the series until 1996, earning a reported annual salary of £90,000. Two years into the role, she experienced a 14-month nervous breakdown but did not confide in anyone besides her close family or take any time off work, which in retrospect she deemed "the worst thing she could have done. During the worst part of her experience Lancashire described herself as "hysterical at the thought of getting out of bed". Her mother Hilda forced her to seek medical assistance for her condition, which Lancashire states "gave me my life back", her twenties having been "a write-off".
    Between 26 September and 19 October 1991, Lancashire played the title role in an adaption of Educating Rita at the Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch.
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  • 1990
    Age 25
    In 1990, Lancashire received her "big break" — the role of Linda in a production of Willy Russell's Blood Brothers at the Albery Theatre in London's West End.
    More Details Hide Details Though she thoroughly enjoyed the experience, she found it difficult to reconcile performing in London with raising two young children in Manchester. Two weeks after finishing her run in Blood Brothers, Lancashire auditioned for the role of new Coronation Street character Raquel Wolstenhulme, a colleague of supermarket employee Curly Watts (Kevin Kennedy). Lancashire joined on a three-month contract, continuing to teach at Salford University for another year. Raquel first appeared on 25 January 1991 and departed on 10 May; having moved to London to try to launch a modelling career. Lancashire had initially been reserved about Raquel's characterisation, noting that her "acidic side" could have rendered her the "street bitch" had it been embellished. She took care to highlight Raquel's potential, playing against what had been written to make her more comic, evoking audience sympathy.
  • 1987
    Age 22
    In 1987, she made a brief appearance in Coronation Street as Wendy Farmer, a prospective lodger of series regular Jack Duckworth (Bill Tarmey).
    More Details Hide Details In the late 1980s, she also appeared in an episode of the children's anthology series Dramarama, and a single episode of the ITV sitcom Watching.
    Thomas, her first child with Hargreaves, was born in 1987; a second son, Matthew, was born in 1989.
    More Details Hide Details During her early career, Lancashire found herself with large breaks between theatre appearances. To support herself financially, she worked as a drama teacher for five years at Salford University alongside her acting work.
  • 1986
    Age 21
    She graduated in 1986, describing her time as a student there as "tremendous" but "seriously hard work and quite intimidating".
    More Details Hide Details After rejection from several repertory theatre companies, Lancashire was given her first acting role by Howard Lloyd-Lewis, artistic director of the Manchester Library Theatre Company, which provided her with an Equity Card. Lancashire performed two plays with the company, Pacific Overtures and The Beauty Game, which she states formed "the start of my career as an actor". She found her first professional acting experience "terrifying" as a result of the live audiences, recalling that, "because I wore a bathing costume in some of the scenes, I got heckled!" She also realised that taking risks or underperforming could have had consequences for her acting career. At the age of 22, Lancashire married her first serious boyfriend, Gary Hargreaves, a music lecturer 11 years her senior, whom she had met four years earlier.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1976
    Age 11
    Lancashire was educated at Oldham Hulme Grammar School between 1976 and 1981.
    More Details Hide Details At the age of 17, she started to suffer from clinical depression. Lancashire states that she was never driven by the ideas of fame and status. Her background had inspired an initial interest in working behind the scenes in television. She did not give serious thought to the performing until the age of 18. After winning a place at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama — where her contemporaries included Shirley Henderson, Maggie O'Neill and Niamh Cusack — Lancashire realised that she enjoyed acting.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1964
    Born
    Lancashire was born on 10 October 1964 in Oldham, Lancashire.
    More Details Hide Details Her father Geoffrey Lancashire (1933–2004) was a television scriptwriter noted for his work on the soap opera Coronation Street and situation comedies such as The Cuckoo Waltz. Her mother Hilda worked as Geoffrey's personal assistant. She has three brothers, one her elder, one younger and a twin.
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