Patricia Harmsworth, Viscountess Rothermere

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Beverly Brooks
Born Patricia Evelyn Beverley Matthews
(1933-05-05)5 May 1933
New York City, New York, U.S.
Died 12 August 1992(1992-08-12) (aged 59)[1]
Nice, France
Nationality British
Occupation Actress, Socialite
Title Viscountess Rothermere
Spouse(s) Christopher John Brooks
(m. 1951; div. 1957)

Vere Harmsworth
(m. 1957; her death 1992)
Children with Brooks:
Sarah Brooks (b. 1956)
with Harmsworth:
Geraldine Harmsworth (b. 1957)
Camilla Harmsworth (b. 1964)
Jonathan Harmsworth (b. 1967)
Parent(s) John William Matthews

Patricia Evelyn Beverley Matthews Harmsworth, Viscountess Rothermere (5 May 1933 – 12 August 1992) was an English socialite and actress. As Beverly Brooks, she appeared in several films, such as Reach for the Sky (1956).

Early life

Patricia Evelyn Beverley Matthews was born on 5 May 1933 to John William Matthews, an architect.[2]


Shortly after her first marriage, and the birth of her first child, she enrolled at the Rank Charm School to become a starlet. This led to her getting a part in 'Reach for the Sky'.



  • The Vise — "Diana" in episode "The Eighth Window" (episode No. 1.19) (4 February 1955)

Personal life

When she was 18 years old, Matthews met Captain Christopher Brooks, of the Coldstream Guards, while she was attending a motor-racing event at Goodwood. They married soon after on 2 June 1951. Together they had:

  • Sarah Jane Brooks (born 1956)[3]

At the age of 23, while still married to Captain Brooks, she met Vere Harmsworth (1925–1998) at a party. She soon divorced Brooks and married the eventual Viscount Rothermere on 21 March 1957. In 1957 and 1964, she gave birth to two daughters. After her father-in-law, Esmond Harmsworth (1898–1978), remarried and produced a son, also named Esmond, Patricia researched the methods of a Dr. August Von Borosini in influencing the sex of her baby and gave birth to a son in December 1967.[2] Their children were:

As Lady Rothermere, she led a colourful social life, earning her the nickname of "Bubbles", through a love of champagne. She died aged 59 from a heart attack in Nice, France, after taking an accidental overdose of sleeping pills.[4][5]


In 1997, Jonathan Harmsworth, set up 'The Patricia Rothermere Award' in honour of his mother. It was a two-part award and the first part went to Judi Dench in recognition of her services to theatre. The second part of the award was given to promising drama students of that year. In 1997, that went to Mark Rice-Oxley. The award was presented at the Evening Standard Awards show.[6] It was later called the 'Lady Rothermere Drama Award'.


  1. ^ "Obituary: Patricia Rothermere". Independent. 
  2. ^ a b Coleridge, Nicholas (13 June 1993). "The Viscount of Middle England: Lord Rothermere is the last of the grandee press barons, a product of old money and social privilege, living in maverick style. But his empire has at its heart the new-monied aspirational conservatism of the Daily Mail". Independent. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  3. ^ "Major Harry St John Holcroft 1951-2013". 
  4. ^ "Society hostess died following drug overdose". The Independent - UK. 24 September 1992. Retrieved 21 February 2017. 
  5. ^ "Lord Rothermere, Press Giant, Is Dead at 73". New York Times. 3 September 1998. Retrieved 21 February 2017. 
  6. ^ Lister, David (29 November 1997). "Arts: National in clean sweep of awards". Independent. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 

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