Beryl Reid

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Beryl Reid
OBE
Beryl Reid Allan Warren.jpg
Reid in 1974
Born
Beryl Elizabeth Reid

(1919-06-17)17 June 1919
Died13 October 1996(1996-10-13) (aged 77)
Cause of deathpneumonia and osteoporosis
OccupationActress
Years active1940–1994
Spouse(s)Bill Worsley (1949–1953; divorced)
Derek Franklin (1954–1966; divorced)

Beryl Elizabeth Reid, OBE (17 June 1919 – 13 October 1996) was a British actress of stage and screen. She won the 1967 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for The Killing of Sister George, the 1980 Olivier Award for Best Comedy Performance for Born in the Gardens, and the 1982 BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress for Smiley's People. Her film appearances included The Belles of St. Trinian's (1954), The Killing of Sister George (1968), The Assassination Bureau (1969) and No Sex Please, We're British (1973).

Early life[edit]

Born in Hereford in 1919,[1] Reid was the daughter of Scottish parents and grew up in Manchester, where she attended Withington and Levenshulme High Schools.

Career[edit]

Leaving school at 16, she made her debut in 1936 as a music hall performer at the Floral Hall, Bridlington. Before and during the Second World War, she took part in variety shows and pantomimes. She had no formal training but later appeared at the Royal National Theatre in London as a comedy actress. Her first big success came in the BBC radio show Educating Archie as naughty schoolgirl Monica and later as the Brummie, "Marlene."

Her many film and television roles as a character actor were usually well received. She reprised her Tony Award-winning performance of a lesbian soap opera star in The Killing of Sister George for the 1968 screen version and was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture Actress in a Drama. The tour of the play was not a success; people in shops refused to serve her and other performers due to the gay characters in the play.[2]

She was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1976 when she was surprised by Eamonn Andrews in the car park of Thames Television's Teddington Studios.

In both Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Smiley's People, Reid played Connie Sachs. For Smiley's People she won a BAFTA for Best Actress on Television. She also wrote an autobiography, So Much Love, which was well received[citation needed]. She played the part of an elderly feminist and political subversive in the 1987 television drama, The Beiderbecke Tapes.

Always a big personality, character actress, gifted in comedy, she appeared in many situation comedies and variety programmes on TV including BBC TV's long running music hall show, The Good Old Days.

Between 1981 and 1983, she co-presented the Children's TV programme Get up and Go for Yorkshire Television, her co-presenter "Mooncat" being a green, talking, puppet cat. Stephen Boxer was her human co-star. After she left the show it became titled simply Mooncat and Co.

She married twice, but had no children.

An authorised biography, Roll Out the Beryl, was published by Fantom Films on 22 August 2016. Written by Kaye Crawford, it was the first biography to be written of the actress and coincided with the twentieth anniversary of her death.

Death[edit]

Beryl Reid died on 13 October 1996 from pneumonia and osteoporosis at a South Buckinghamshire hospital following knee surgery. She was 77 years old.[3][4]

Filmography[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1954 The Belles of St Trinian's Miss Wilson
1956 The Extra Day Beryl
1960 Two-Way Stretch Miss Pringle
1962 The Dock Brief Doris Fowle
1968 Inspector Clouseau Mrs. Weaver
1968 Star! Rose
1968 The Killing of Sister George June 'George' Buckridge Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama
1969 The Assassination Bureau Madame Otero
1970 Entertaining Mr Sloane Kath
1970 The Beast in the Cellar Ellie Ballantyne
1971 Psychomania Mrs. Latham
1972 Father, Dear Father Mrs. Stoppard
1972 Dr. Phibes Rises Again Miss Ambrose, Harry's Cousin
1973 No Sex Please, We're British Bertha Hunter
1977 Joseph Andrews Mrs. Slipslop
1978 Rosie Dixon - Night Nurse Matron
1978 Carry On Emmannuelle Mrs Valentine
1979 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Connie Sachs Episode "Smiley Tracks the Mole"
Nominated - British Academy Television Award for Best Actress
1980 Rhubarb Rhubarb Home Owner's Wife
1981 Late Flowering Love segment "Invasion Exercise on the Poultry Farm"
1981 Worzel Gummidge (TV series) Sarah Pigswell Series 4 Episode 1 "Muvver's Day"
1982 Doctor Who: Earthshock Briggs (Episodes Two, Three, Four)
1982 Smiley's People Connie Sachs (Episode No. 1.3)
British Academy Television Award for Best Actress
1983 Yellowbeard Lady Lambourn
1983 The Wind in the Willows Ms. Carrington Moss
1983 The Irish R.M. Mrs Knox of Aussolas Castle
1984 Minder Ruby Hubbard Series 5, Episode 4 "The Second Time Around"
1985 The Doctor and the Devils Mrs. Flynn
1985 Bergerac Miss Broome Series 4, Episode 4 "Low Profile"
1985 The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole May Mole (5 episodes)
1987 The Growing Pains of Adrian Mole Grandma Mole (6 episodes)
1987 The Beiderbecke Tapes Sylvia (1 episode)

References[edit]

  1. ^ GRO Register of Births: SEP 1919 6a 720 HEREFORD, Beryl E. Reid mmn=McDonald
  2. ^ Daily Telegraph obituary, also featured in Chin Up Girls! (2005)
  3. ^ GRO Register of Deaths: Oct 1996 B17A 59 Chiltern and South Buckinghamshire, Beryl Elizabeth Reid, DoB 17 June 1919, aged 77.
  4. ^ MEL GUSSOWPublished: 15 October 1996 (15 October 1996). "Beryl Reid, Actress, 76, Dies; Gave Life to Varied Eccentrics - New York Times". Nytimes.com. Retrieved 2012-06-13.

External links[edit]