Nicola Bryant

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Nicola Bryant
Bryant at the Television & Movie Store, Norwich, England on 24 May 2008
Nicola Jane Bryant[1]

(1960-10-11) 11 October 1960 (age 59)
Guildford, Surrey, England
Alma materWebber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art[2]
Years active1983–present

Nicola Jane Bryant (born 11 October 1960[1][3]) is an English actress known for her role as Perpugilliam "Peri" Brown, a companion to both the Fifth and Sixth Doctors in the BBC science fiction television series Doctor Who, appearing on-screen from 1984 to 1986.

Early life[edit]

Nicola Bryant was born and raised in a small village near Guildford in Surrey, the older of two daughters of Denis and Sheila Bryant. Beginning dance classes at the age of three, she also began to learn the piano. At the age of ten she auditioned to go to ballet schools, but was unable to take up places offered because of asthma. Upset by this development, she joined a local amateur dramatic group.

On leaving school she auditioned for all of the London drama schools, and took up a scholarship to the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art. In her final year there, she played the part of Nanette in a production of the musical No, No, Nanette.[4]


Bryant's first professional part was as Peri Brown in Doctor Who.[4] She played the part from 1984 to 1986, first with Peter Davison, and then with Colin Baker as the Doctor.[5] Bryant's tenure on the show was met with raised eyebrows in some quarters as series producer John Nathan-Turner admitted (in his book Doctor Who: The Companions and elsewhere) that his intention was to pump up the sex appeal of the ageing series by casting the young actress who was often seen wearing low-cut outfits in the show. Her character was American and for a while a publicity-driven fiction was maintained suggesting Bryant was also American, something Bryant had herself stated in press interviews when she landed the part. During her final series on Doctor Who, the actress was allowed to dress more conservatively on the show.

Bryant appeared in the Doctor Who serial The Two Doctors (1985), and she enjoyed working with Patrick Troughton, who returned as the Second Doctor. During the programme's hiatus during 1985 and 1986, Bryant reprised the role of Peri in a BBC radio production entitled Slipback alongside Baker.

After appearing in Doctor Who, Bryant spent nine months at the Savoy Theatre in the West End of London in the thriller Killing Jessica with Patrick Macnee, directed by Bryan Forbes.[4] She was cast in other television roles, including a part in Blackadder's Christmas Carol (1988). In the early to mid-1990s, she co-starred with Baker in a series of made-for-video science fiction films entitled The Stranger for BBV, although the first few films in the series were little more than Doctor Who episodes in disguise. She also appeared alongside Baker, Davison, Sylvester McCoy and Jon Pertwee in another BBV production, The Airzone Solution, which includes a love scene between Baker and Bryant.

Bryant has reprised the role of Peri in several of the Big Finish Productions Doctor Who spin-off audio plays, appearing both with Peter Davison and Colin Baker. She also directed UNIT: The Wasting and Judge Dredd: 99 Code Red!.

In February 2006, she performed in a New End Theatre production of the Carl Djerassi play Taboos, and in early 2007 appeared in a London stage production of Tom Stoppard's Rock 'n' Roll at the Duke of York's Theatre. A DVD documentary, In The Footsteps of The Two Doctors, following Bryant's return to some of the locations featured in the Doctor Who serial The Two Doctors, was released in late 2006.[6]

She returned to the stage in 2008 in a touring production of an adaptation of Daphne du Maurier’s "Don't Look Now", playing the part of Laura Baxter. This production continued into 2009.[5]

In the summer of 2009, Bryant filmed an improvised documentary-style film for Australian director Ben Briand as well as recording eight audio stories for Big Finish as a "missing season" of adventures for Doctor Who. On 2 March 2010 she appeared in Holby City as a television news reporter,[7] and in 2011 she featured in the Dark Shadows audio drama The Blind Painter. In 2013 she appeared in a Doctor Who-themed episode of the game show Pointless.[8]

Bryant guest-starred as ‘Lana’ in the 2017 two-part finale of the internet series Star Trek Continues, which finishes the five-year mission of Star Trek: The Original Series.



Year Title Role Notes
1998 Parting Shots Beverley
2016 The Head Hunter Dr. Shaw


Year Title Role Notes
1984-1986 Doctor Who Perpugilliam "Peri" Brown 33 Episodes
1988 Blackadder's Christmas Carol Millicent
1993 Doctor Who: Dimensions in Time Peri Brown
1995-1997 The Biz Martine All 24 episodes
1996 The 10 Percenters Julia Episode: "Wedding"
1998 Animal Ark Sara Lawson Episode: "Bunnies in the Bathroom"
2000 Casualty Susan Harris Episode: "Fall Out"
2000 Doctors Sonia Heyward-Smith Episode: "Catch-22"
2007 Holby City Catherine Sloman Episode: "Someone to Watch Over Me"
2009 My Family Anne Episode: "A Very Brief Encounter"
2010 Janet Episode: "Ben Behaving Badly"
2010 Holby City Reporter Episode: "The Butterfly Effect: Part One"
2010 Doctors Jackie Fallon Episode: "A Naked Ambition"
2010 Scoop Anne Boleyn Episode: "Back Tud-or Future"
2011 Unlawful Killing Romilly Weeks
2015 The Promise Emily Newman
2016 New Blood TV Interviewer Episode: "Case 3, Part 2"
2017 Star Trek Continues Lana Episodes "To Boldly Go", Parts I and II
2020 Gentrification Annabel de Winter Episode: "Part Seven"

Direct to DVD films[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1992 More Than a Messiah Miss Brown
1993 The Airzone Solution Elenya Brown
1993 In Memory Alone Miss Brown


  1. ^ a b Ms Nicola Jane Bryant Retrieved 13 March 2012.
  2. ^
  3. ^ England & Wales Birth Index.
  4. ^ a b c Nicola Bryant biography at
  5. ^ a b "Look! It's Doctor Who star Nicola - and the fans are flocking to see her". West Sussex Gazette. 3 October 2008. Retrieved 17 June 2011.
  6. ^ ""Nicola Bryant: In the Footsteps of the Two Doctors" DVD". Archived from the original on 16 May 2015. Retrieved 12 January 2016.
  7. ^ "BBC One - Holby City, Series 12, The Butterfly Effect - Part 1". BBC. Retrieved 12 January 2016.
  8. ^ "The ultimate guide to Doctor Who's companions - and what they did next". 12 September 2018.

External links[edit]