Amanda Burton

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This article is about the actor. For the netballer, see Amanda Burton (netballer).
Amanda Burton
Born (1956-10-10) 10 October 1956 (age 59)
Londonderry, Northern Ireland
Occupation Actress
Years active 1981–present
Spouse(s) Jonathan Hartley (1976-1982; divorced)
Sven Arnstein (1989-2004; divorced); 2 children
Awards National Television Award
TV Quick Award

Amanda Burton (born 10 October 1956) is a Northern Irish actress, active from 1981. During her career, Burton was best known for her television roles as Heather Black in the Channel 4 soap opera Brookside, Beth Glover in Peak Practice, Sam Ryan in the BBC crime drama series Silent Witness, Clare Blake in The Commander and Karen Fisher in Waterloo Road.

Early years[edit]

Burton was born in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, the youngest of four sisters. Her father was a primary school headmaster.[1] After attending Londonderry High School, a girls-only secondary school in the city of Londonderry, she moved to England at the age of 18, where she spent three years studying drama at the Manchester Metropolitan School of Theatre.[1] While there she met theatre technician Jonathan Hartley, whom she married in 1976; the couple divorced in 1982. She remarried, to Sven Arnstein in 1989; the couple had two children before divorcing in 2004.[2]


Although best known for her television roles, Burton had worked almost exclusively in the theatre prior to landing the role of Heather Black in Channel 4's Liverpool-based flagship drama series Brookside. After nearly four years in the role, during which time Heather had become one of the show's most-popular residents of Brookside Close, she began to lose sympathy with her character and decided to leave.[2] Following her departure her television work consisted mainly of guest appearances, with parts in a number of peak-time drama series including Minder, Inspector Morse, Boon, Medics, Van Der Valk, Stay Lucky and Lovejoy.[2]

In 1993 Burton starred alongside Kevin Whately in Peak Practice. She played the role of Doctor Beth Glover in the medical drama series, based in Derbyshire's Peak District, for three series until her departure in 1995. In 1996 she then took the main role of Professor Sam Ryan in the highly acclaimed BBC drama Silent Witness; she held this role until 2004. After Silent Witness, she took on the role of Prosecutor Helen West in a series based on Frances Fyfield's novels. She also played Aunt Polly in a 2003 remake of Pollyanna. One of her most recent roles is as Commander Clare Blake in Lynda La Plante's drama, The Commander.[2]

In 2010, Burton appeared in the sixth series of BBC drama Waterloo Road as new head teacher, Karen Fisher,[3] and departed the show in 2011.[4] She recently starred in BBC1's Celebrity Masterchef and made it through to the semi-finals.

Notable roles[edit]



Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Recipient Result
1998 National Television Award Most Popular Actress Silent Witness Won
1999 National Television Award Most Popular Actress Silent Witness Won
1999 TV Quick Award Best Actress Silent Witness Won
2001 National Television Award Most Popular Actress Silent Witness Won
2003 National Television Award Most Popular Actress Silent Witness Nominated
2004 IFTA Award Best Actress in a TV Drama Silent Witness Nominated
2011 TV Quick Award Best Actress Waterloo Road Won

References and notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bearn, Emily; "Being Amanda Burton",, 10 May 2002; retrieved 14 July 2009.
  2. ^ a b c d Amanda Burton at the Internet Movie Database
  3. ^ Waterloo Road Press Release,; accessed 12 August 2015.
  4. ^ Amanda Burton quits Waterloo Road,; accessed 12 August 2015.

External links[edit]