||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (November 2011)|
5 August 1935 |
Brighton, Sussex, England, United Kingdom
|Alma mater||Central School of Speech and Drama|
|Occupation||Television and film actress|
Only Fools and Horses
|Spouse(s)||James Tabernacle (divorced)
Timothy Carlton (m. 1976–present)
Wanda Ventham (born 5 August 1935) is an English actress, known primarily for her role as Colonel Virginia Lake in the 1970s science-fiction television series UFO, and for her recurring role as Pamela Parry (Cassandra's mother) in the sitcom Only Fools and Horses from 1989 to 1992. She also appeared in two episodes of The Saint alongside Sir Roger Moore.
Ventham was born in Brighton, Sussex, the daughter of Gladys Frances (née Holtham) and Frederick Howard Ventham. She originally held aspirations of becoming an artist and attended art school for one year, working as a scenic painter for the Connaught Theatre during her school holidays. It was her exposure to professional theatre that prompted her to leave art school and pursue a career in acting. She trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama, graduating in 1956.
Ventham's numerous TV credits include regular roles in Heartbeat as Fiona Weston, Hetty Wainthropp Investigates as Margaret Balshaw, and The Rag Trade as Shirley. She also played a love interest for Arthur Daley in Minder, Susan's mother in Coupling, and Deborah's mother in Men Behaving Badly. She appeared in the lead role in the 15-part BBC series The Lotus Eaters (1972–73), opposite Ian Hendry, and made a guest appearance in Rutland Weekend Television. She was in an episode of "Danger Man", and the series Patrick McGoohan did right after - the allegorical, spy series, The Prisoner, the sitcoms Executive Stress and Next of Kin, and the sketch show The Two Ronnies.
She has appeared in Doctor Who on three occasions over three decades: as Jean Rock in The Faceless Ones (1967), as Thea Ransome in Image of the Fendahl (1977) and as Faroon in Time and the Rani (1987). Her appearance in Image of the Fendahl was opposite Denis Lill. Ventham and Lill would later play Pamela and Alan Parry in the sitcom Only Fools and Horses.
Ventham met actor Timothy Carlton in 1970 while filming sequences for the drama series A Family At War and they have been married since April 1976. They are the parents of actor Benedict Cumberbatch. Ventham also has a daughter, Tracy, from her first marriage, to James Tabernacle. Ventham is a collector of barn owl memorabilia.
|1956||My Teenage Daughter||Gina|
|1959||The Navy Lark||Mabel|
|1964||Carry On Cleo||Pretty Bidder||Uncredited|
|1965||The Big Job||Dot Franklin|
|1965||The Knack ...and How to Get It||Gym Mistress||Uncredited|
|1966||Death Is a Woman||Priscilla Blunstone-Smythe|
|1966||The Spy with a Cold Nose||Mrs. Winters|
|1967||Mister Ten Per Cent||Kathy|
|1968||The Blood Beast Terror||Clare Mallinger||Ventham also provided stunt work for the film and appeared in costume as the giant moth monster.|
|1968||Carry On Up The Khyber||Khasi's First Wife|
|1974||Invasion: UFO||Col. Virginia Lake|
|1974||Captain Kronos – Vampire Hunter||Lady Durward|
|2002||Mrs Caldicot's Cabbage War||Victoria|
|1962–1963||The Rag Trade||Shirley||Series regular; 18 episodes|
|1964–1965||Danger Man||Stella Dorset
|1964–1966||The Saint||Laura Stride
|1965||The Likely Lads||Angela||1 episode|
|1965||The Avengers||Nurse Spray||1 episode|
|1967||The Prisoner||Computer Attendant||1 episode|
|1967||The Caesars||Ennia||1 episode|
|1967–1971||The Troubleshooters||Moira Hart||Recurring; 4 episodes|
|1967–1987||Doctor Who||Jean Rock
Thea Ransome/Fendahl Core
|Serial: "The Faceless Ones" (6 episodes)
Serial: "Image of the Fendahl" (4 episodes)
Serial: "Time and the Rani" (3 episodes)
|1969||The Gold Robbers||Dee Lattery||1 episode|
|1969||Department S||Leila Rankin||1 episode|
|1970||Z-Cars||Mrs. Owen||1 episode|
|1970–1971||A Family At War||Jenny Graham||Recurring; 3 episodes|
|1970||Doctor At Large||Maggie Weston||1 episode|
|1970–1973||UFO||Col. Virginia Lake||Series regular; 9 episodes|
|1972–1973||The Lotus Eaters||Ann Shepherd||Lead role; 15 episodes|
|1975||The Sweeney||Brenda||1 episode|
|1975||Rutland Weekend Television||Various characters||2 episodes|
|1976||Emmerdale Farm||Heather Bannerman||Recurring; 6 episodes|
|1977||Crown Court||Sybil Halstead||2 episodes|
|1978–1979||Fallen Hero||Dorothy Hopkins||Lead role; 11 episodes|
|1980||The Two Ronnies||Jack||2 episodes|
|1982||Minder||Beryl Murdoch||1 episode|
|1986–1987||Executive Stress||Sylvia||Recurring; 4 episodes|
|1989–1992||Only Fools and Horses||Pamela Parry||Recurring; 4 episodes|
|1995–1996||Next of Kin||Rosie||Recurring; 6 episodes|
|1996–1997||Heartbeat||Fiona Weston||Recurring; 4 episodes|
|2005||Midsomer Murders||Romany Rose||1 episode|
|1960||Watch It, Sailor!||Daphne Pink||Apollo Theatre, London|
|1990||Out of Order||Pamela||Shaftesbury Theatre, London|
|2002||One for the Pot||Amy Hardcastle||Theatre Royal, Windsor|
|2012||Quartet||Cissy||Theatre-on-the-Bay, Cape Town|
- Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Birth Index: 1916-2005 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008. Original data: General Register Office. England and Wales Civil Registration Indexes. London, England: General Register Office.
- FreeBMD. England & Wales, FreeBMD Birth Index, 1837-1915 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Original data: General Register Office. England and Wales Civil Registration Indexes. London, England: General Register Office.
- Ventham, Wanda. Audio commentary for "Timelash". In: The Complete UFO Megaset (DVD). A&E Home Entertainment. 2003.
- Passingham, Kenneth (22 March 1975). "It's good news to know I'm still fanciable". TV Times: 21–22.
- Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Marriage Index: 1916-2005 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008. Original data: General Register Office. England and Wales Civil Registration Indexes. London, England: General Register Office.
- Moran, Caitlin (11 May 2013). "What's not to love about Benedict Cumberbatch?". The Times. Retrieved 16 July 2013.