Brenda Cowling

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Brenda Rose Cowling (23 April 1925, Islington, London – 2 October 2010, Northwood, London) was an English actress. A native of London, Cowling wanted to be a film actress from the time she was a child; however, upon leaving school, she trained instead as a shorthand typist.


After a time she joined the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where she was a member of the same class as Warren Mitchell and Jimmy Perry.[1] While there, she made her film debut in a small role in Alfred Hitchcock's Stage Fright (1950).

Much of her early acting work was in repertory, before she began her television career. She also appeared in films, such as The Railway Children (1970), Please Sir! (1971), Carry On Girls (1973), Carry On Behind (1975). International Velvet (1978) and Octopussy (1983). Television serials in which she appeared include Follyfoot, Fawlty Towers, Are You Being Served?, The Famous Five, three episodes of Hi-De-Hi and The Legacy of Reginald Perrin. Perhaps her most famous role was as the cook, Mrs. Lipton, in You Rang, M'Lord?


Cowling died on 2 October 2010, at the actors' retirement home, Denville Hall, aged 85.[2]


  1. ^ Are You Being Served? A Celebration of Twenty-Five Years. Richard Webber with David Croft and Jeremy Lloyd. New York; Welcome Rain, 1998.
  2. ^ Obituary in The Guardian

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