Entertainment

Actress Haydn Gwynne dies

Actress Haydn Gwynne has died aged 66 following a recent cancer diagnosis, her representatives have confirmed.

The stage and screen actor was best known for her roles in comedy series Drop The Dead Donkey and as Camilla in British sitcom The Windsors.

Haydn Gwynne arrives for the Laurence Olivier Awards in 2006
Image:
Gwynne at the Laurence Olivier Awards in 2006

A statement from her representatives said: “It is with great sadness we are sharing with you that, following her recent diagnosis with cancer, the star of stage and screen Haydn Gwynne died in hospital in the small hours of Friday October 20, surrounded by her beloved sons, close family and friends.

“We would like to thank the staff and teams at the Royal Marsden and Brompton Hospitals for their wonderful care over the last few weeks.”

John Owen-Jones and Haydn Gwynne as the judges in  The Great British Bake Off Musical
Image:
John Owen-Jones and Haydn Gwynne as the judges in The Great British Bake Off Musical

Born in Sussex, Gwynne spent her early adult life in Rome teaching English, but had long wanted to be an actress and returned home to pursue her dream at age 25.

She first made her name in 1990 as the icy assistant editor Alex Pates in the comedy Drop The Dead Donkey, which also earned her a Bafta TV nomination in 1992.

Her role as Dr Joanna Graham in Peak Practice also helped propel her to fame.

She had a celebrated career on stage as well and received two Olivier Award nods for her performance in West End productions of City Of Angels and Billy Elliot The Musical.

Haydn Gwynne,

She secured two further nominations for her roles in The Threepenny Opera and Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown.

Her West End theatre roles included playing Margaret Thatcher in Peter Morgan’s 2013 play The Audience, which also starred Dame Helen Mirren as the Queen.

Gwynne also featured in a number of royal series including playing Camilla in The Windsors.

She later portrayed former royal aide Lady Susan Hussey, who resigned from the royal household following a racism row, in the fifth series of The Crown.

Gwynne also joined The Great British Bake Off Musical as Pam Lee, the judge based on Prue Leith, earlier this year.

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