Lancashire at the 2013 British Academy Television Awards
Sarah-Jane Abigail Lancashire|
10 October 1964
Oldham, Lancashire, England
|Known for||List of credits|
Peter Salmon (m. 2001)
Sarah-Jane Abigail Lancashire, OBE (born 10 October 1964) is an English actress from Oldham, Lancashire. She graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1986 and began her career in local theatre, whilst teaching drama classes at the University of Salford. Lancashire found popular success in television programmes including Coronation Street (1991–1996, 2000), Where the Heart Is (1997–1999), Clocking Off (2000) and Seeing Red (2000) and earned widespread recognition. In the summer of 2000, Lancashire signed a two-year golden handcuffs contract with the ITV network which made her the UK's highest paid television actress.
Subsequent television roles include the costume dramas Oliver Twist (2007), Lark Rise to Candleford (2008–2011) and The Paradise (2012), and the fact based dramas Cherished (2005) and Five Daughters (2010). Since 2012, Lancashire has earned extensive critical acclaim for her roles in the contemporary drama series Last Tango in Halifax (2012–2016) and Happy Valley (2014–present). Lancashire has also appeared in the feature films And When Did You Last See Your Father? (2007) and Dad's Army (2016), and West End theatre productions including Blood Brothers in 1990, Guys and Dolls from 2005 to 2006 and Betty Blue Eyes in 2011.
Her combined acting credits have earned Lancashire a number of awards and nominations over a career spanning four decades, including two British Academy Television Award wins out of five nominations. She was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2017 Birthday Honours for services to drama.
- 1 Life and career (20th century)
- 2 Life and career (21st century)
- 3 Filmography
- 4 Awards and nominations
- 5 References
- 6 External links
Life and career (20th century)
Early life and career beginnings (1964–1990)
Her father, Geoffrey Lancashire (1933–2004), was a television scriptwriter noted for his work on the soap opera Coronation Street and situation comedies such as The Cuckoo Waltz. Her mother, Hilda, worked as Geoffrey's personal assistant. She has three brothers, one her elder, one younger and a twin. Lancashire was educated at Oldham Hulme Grammar School between 1976-81.
Lancashire has stated she was never driven by the ideas of fame and status. Her background had inspired an initial interest in working behind the scenes in television. She did not give serious thought to the performing arts until the age of 18. After winning a place at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Lancashire realised that she enjoyed acting. She graduated in 1986, describing her time as a student there as "tremendous" but "seriously hard work and quite intimidating".
After rejection from several repertory theatre companies, Lancashire was given her first acting role by Howard Lloyd-Lewis, artistic director of the Manchester Library Theatre Company, which provided her with an Equity Card. Lancashire performed two plays with the company, Pacific Overtures and The Beauty Game, which she states formed "the start of my career as an actor". She found her first professional acting experience "terrifying" as a result of the live audiences, recalling that, "because I wore a bathing costume in some of the scenes, I got heckled!" She also realised that taking risks or underperforming could have had consequences for her acting career. Her role as Denise in The Beauty Game earned her a nomination for Best Supporting Actress at the Manchester Evening News Theatre Awards.
At the age of 22, Lancashire married her first serious boyfriend, Gary Hargreaves, a music lecturer 11 years her senior, whom she had met four years earlier.
Recalling the circumstances of her marriage in 2001, Lancashire stated she only married because she fell pregnant and possessed both a traditional mindset and a fear of the stigma of having a child out of wedlock. Thomas, her first child with Hargreaves, was born in 1987; a second son, Matthew, was born in 1989. During her early career, Lancashire found herself with large breaks between theatre appearances. To support herself financially, she worked as a drama teacher for five years at Salford University alongside her acting work.
Discussing Lancashire's time as a visiting lecturer in Acting and Characterisation, Professor Ron Cook, Head of the University's School of Media, Music and Performance, noted that Lancashire made a "significant impact" in the formative stages of the drama department at the University and had also directed student productions.
In 1987, Lancashire made a brief appearance in Coronation Street as Wendy Farmer, a prospective lodger of series regular Jack Duckworth (Bill Tarmey). In the late 1980s, she also appeared in an episode of the children's anthology series Dramarama, and a single episode of the ITV sitcom Watching.
In 1990, Lancashire received her "big break" — the role of Linda in a production of Willy Russell's Blood Brothers at the Albery Theatre. Although she thoroughly enjoyed performing in London's West End, she found it difficult to reconcile the experience with raising two young children in Manchester.
Breakthrough and popular success (1991–2000)
Two weeks after finishing her run in Blood Brothers, Lancashire auditioned for the role of new Coronation Street character Raquel Wolstenhulme, a colleague of supermarket employee Curly Watts (Kevin Kennedy).
Lancashire joined on a three-month contract, continuing to teach at Salford University for another year. Raquel first appeared on 25 January 1991 and departed on 10 May; having moved to London to try to launch a modelling career. Lancashire had initially been reserved about Raquel's characterisation, noting that her "acidic side" could have rendered her the "street bitch" had it been embellished. She took care to highlight Raquel's potential, playing against what had been written to make her more comic, evoking audience sympathy. Between 26 September and 19 October 1991, Lancashire played the title role in an adaption of Educating Rita at the Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch. Following Raquel's reintroduction on 30 December 1991, Lancashire committed herself to Coronation Street full-time. She would remain in the series until 1996, earning a reported annual salary of £90,000.
Two years into the role, she experienced a 14-month nervous breakdown but did not confide in anyone besides her close family or take any time off work, which in retrospect she deemed "the worst thing [she] could have done. During the worst part of her experience Lancashire described herself as "hysterical at the thought of getting out of bed". Her mother Hilda forced her to seek medical assistance for her condition, which Lancashire states "gave me my life back", her twenties having been "a write-off".
Lancashire felt her first marriage had also contributed to her unhappiness; in 2001, she stated that though her marriage lasted ten years, it "was 10 years longer than it should have done". In 1995 she separated from Hargeaves; the pair would ultimately later divorce. She described leaving her marriage as a "cleansing experience" and a "renaissance"; one that enabled her to rediscover her sense of identity.
In December 1995 Lancashire starred in the spin-off straight-to-video film Coronation Street – The Cruise, a 75-minute special detailing Raquel and Curly's honeymoon. The special was advertised as being exclusive to video, and 750,000 copies were sold, to the value of £10 million. Lancashire departed Coronation Street in 1996 due to her heavy work schedule and desire to pursue other projects. She had also tired of the fame the role brought her, shying away from personal appearances and interviews with television magazines. Her final scenes attracted 20 million viewers. Lancashire's performance in the role saw her nominated in the Most Popular Actress category at the 2nd National Television Awards in October 1996.
Lancashire's next role was district nurse Ruth Goddard in the ITV drama series Where the Heart Is, which began airing in 1997. Also in 1997 she filmed a situation comedy for the BBC, Bloomin' Marvellous, in which she played Liz, one half of an argumentative married couple trying for a baby.
However, due to poor viewing figures and a damning critical response the sitcom was not renewed. Regarding the negative reception to the series, her co-star Clive Mantle saracastically remarked "I've seen murderers and rapists get a better press than we did". Lancashire continued to star as Ruth Goddard in Where the Heart Is for its second and third series in 1998 and 1999. In 1998 she was nominated for her second National Television Award for Most Popular Actress. In February 1999 she made a guest appearance in the British dark comedy anthology series Murder Most Horrid alongside comedian Dawn French. The pair played two yachtswoman whose journey ends with fatal repercussions. In April it was announced that Lancashire would be quitting Where the Heart Is, despite an offered pay rise. At the time, Where the Heart is was the third most popular drama on British Television, regularly attracting 12 million viewers. Lancashire's decision was reportedly influenced by the series filming away from home, and a fear that remaining in the series long term would harm her career. In January 2000 she expanded on her decision, stating that Ruth "was too chocolate-boxy, no longer a challenge".
On 2 January 2000, Lancashire returned to Coronation Street for a single episode in which Raquel asks Curly for a divorce. Lancashire felt it was an apt time to return, as she was now a more confident actress and wanted to portray Raquel again before she aged significantly. The series' producer at the time, Jane Macnaught, deemed Raquel one of Coronation Street's most popular ever characters and her return an opportunity for her "millions of fans" to learn what had become of her. Lancashire and Kennedy were the sole actors in the episode, the first to feature just two characters. From late January, Lancashire appeared as factory employee Yvonne Kolakowski, a widow with a dysfunctional personal life, in the BBC One drama series Clocking Off. Lancashire used her own experiences as a single mother in her characterisation. In March, she played actress Coral Atkins in the television film Seeing Red.
Lancashire found shooting the drama, which detailed Atkins' decision to quit her acting career in order to set up a care home for abused children, "mentally draining". Lancashire then spent eight weeks filming the BBC One legal sitcom Chambers in which she played "ambitious" and "bigoted" barrister Ruth Quirke. The series was aired from June 2000. Lancashire's final role in 2000 was in the two-part drama thriller My Fragile Heart. Lancashire's output in 2000 earned her several awards. She was voted best actress at the TV Quick Awards in September 2000 for her roles in Clocking Off and Seeing Red, and in October was voted Most Popular Actress at the 6th National Television Awards for Seeing Red. In March 2001 she was named Drama Performer of the Year by the Television and Radio Industries Club, with mention of her work in Clocking Off and Seeing Red.
Life and career (21st century)
"Golden Handcuffs" contract
Following Lancashire's success in connecting with a television audience, ITV sought to secure her exclusively to their network in a two-year golden handcuffs deal, which was finalised in July 2000. Lancashire became the first actress to be given such a contract with ITV. The deal, worth £1.3 million, made Lancashire the highest-paid actress in British Television. Discussing the exclusive signing ITV controller of drama Nick Elliott identified Lancashire as being someone with "a great range [who] creates a tremendous empathy with an audience". He also admitted that heavy interest in Lancashire from the BBC had been a factor in giving her the contract, and blocking her from working with other networks. Her last role on BBC One during this period was comedy drama Gentleman's Relish, an adaptation of the Miles Gibson novel Kingdom Swann. The television film, which aired on New Year's Day 2001, was Lancashire's first in the costume drama genre; she played a housekeeper harbouring romantic feelings for her employer (Billy Connolly).
Her first role under her new contract with ITV was the six-part drama The Glass opposite John Thaw. The series, which aired between May and June 2001 saw Lancashire star as a saleswoman for a double-glazing company who ends up caught in a love triangle with her boss and his nephew. Retrospectively, the series was judged not to be a success; it averaged 5.8 million viewers, less than rival show on BBC One, Messiah. In August 2001, Lancashire married television executive Peter Salmon, in a low-key ceremony held at Langar Hall, Nottinghamshire. Salmon had proposed to Lancashire in New York during a holiday at Easter time 2001. The two began a romantic relationship in the summer of 2000, though they had first met several years earlier whilst she was portraying Raquel on Coronation Street and he was employed by Granada Studios, which produces the soap opera. In October Lancashire starred in an adaptation of the Michelle Magorian novel Back Home as Peggy Dickinson, a woman adjusting to life in post-war Britain after having been separated from her family during the war.
In March 2002 Lancashire received an Honorary Master of Arts degree from Salford University. In April, She starred in two-part psychological thriller The Cry, which she described as her "most naked role yet". She played a social worker grieving her second still-born child who is determined to protect a baby she perceives to be at risk of abuse. Lancashire drew on her own experiences of clinical depression in her depiction of her character's mentality. Her performance saw her awarded with a Golden Nymph award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Mini-Series at the Monte-Carlo Television Festival. In April it was reported that Lancashire had been lined up play the lead role in comedy drama Life Begins, which creator Mike Bullen had written with Lancashire in mind. However, by June, Lancashire had exited the drama, unwilling to commit to a potentially long running series. Later that month BBC News and newspaper The Guardian reported that Lancashire had exited her exclusive deal with ITV, which would not be renewed after it expired in the Autumn. The decision was reportedly influenced by Lancashire's desire to reduce her workload and to have the freedom to take on other roles. In September 2002 she appeared in a two-part crime drama pilot, Rose and Maloney, as legal investigator Rose Linden. On 22 December she appeared in the television movie Birthday Girl as Rachel Jones, who plans a party to celebrate being in remission from a serious illness, only to discover that the disease has returned.
Lancashire's final role under her ITV contract was Gertrude Morel in an adaptation of D.H. Lawrence's 1913 novel Sons and Lovers, airing in January 2003. The portrayal –her first of a mother with adult children– followed Gertrude's transformation from a young bride into a fifty-something woman ravaged by her life experiences of poverty and domestic abuse. Lancashire re-read the novel several times prior to filming, and identified with the themes of filial and marital relationships she had been unable to appreciate as a GCSE student. The miniseries gave her a sense of conviction in her career path, stating ahead of the broadcast in 2002: "whatever the reason I do what I do, I felt I had come to a point where I could stop searching after this". Reviewing the serial Paul Hoggart of The Times wrote that Lancashire "steals the show" with a "performance of immense subtlety and quiet strength, proof, if we still needed it, that she has matured into a terrific actress." Conversely Andrew Billen, writing in New Statesman, wrote that "Sarah Lancashire was no revelation at all", purely because she had "long since proved herself a formidable actress".
Subsequent projects (2004–2012)
While pregnant with her third child, Lancashire began an 18-month career break, the longest of her working life. In April 2003, Lancashire gave birth to her third son, Joseph. Lancashire's first job after returning to work was her directorial debut on an episode of the BBC One anthology series The Afternoon Play. For "Viva Las Blackpool" she was given the Best Newcomer Award (sponsored by BBC Birmingham) at the Birmingham Screen Festival and the Best New Talent Award at the Royal Television Society (Midlands) awards in 2004. The venture also earned her first British Academy Television Awards nomination in 2005 for Best new Director of Fiction. Lancashire next filmed three two-part stories for Rose and Maloney, following on from the pilot episode in 2002. The delay between shooting for the pilot and its follow-up was a result of Lancashire's career break and problems reconciling her availability with that of co-star Phil Davis.
In 2005 Lancashire starred in The Rotters' Club as a housewife in 1970s Birmingham. Also in 2005 she appeared in the BBC television film Cherished as Angela Cannings, a British woman who was wrongfully convicted of killing her two baby sons. Lancashire was proud to be involved with the project, having greatly admired Cannings strength of character during her ordeal, and being able to relate to her sense of anguish as a parent. In December 2005, Lancashire returned to West End theatre, taking on the role of Miss Adelaide in the Donmar Warehouse production of Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly Theatre. Lancashire was due to stay with the production until March 2006, but due to a severe chest infection made her last appearance on 4 January. In 2006 Lancashire accepted an invitation to write a short autobiographic entry in Who's Who, an establishment "bible" of influential figures judged to have had a significant impact on British life and culture. Lancashire's only television acting role in 2006 was as house-wife and cake-maker Elaine in the BBC comedy drama Angel Cake. In November she presented an episode of the Five documentary series Disappearing Britain in which she interviewed people with memories of Wakes Week holidays in Blackpool during the early 20th century. In February 2007 she made an appearance in the E4 teen drama series Skins. This was followed by a leading role in the BBC Two television drama Sex, the City and Me as solicitor Ruth Gilbert. In October, Lancashire appeared in her first feature film, David Nicholls' And When Did You Last See Your Father? in which she played aunt Beaty. In December, she played the supporting role of Mrs Corney in the BBC's 2007 adaption of Charles Dickens' 1838 novel Oliver Twist. Whilst ambivalent about the serial as a whole, The Daily Mirror's Jane Simon singled Lancashire out for praise stating that she "really sets the tone for the cold, unfeeling world into which orphaned Oliver is born."
Between 2008 and 2011 Lancashire narrated the BBC One series Lark Rise to Candleford, a costume drama based on Flora Thompson's memoir of her Oxfordshire childhood in the 1880s. In April, she appeared in the opening episode of the 2008 series of Doctor Who, as "an enigmatic and powerful businesswoman" who Lancashire described as a "warped Mary Poppins". She was amongst a number of high-profile actors the series' executive producer Russell T Davies secured for the fourth series of the science-fiction drama as part of his intention to make it "bigger and blowsier". In 2009, Lancashire starred in the BBC One musical drama series All the Small Things. She played Esther Caddick, a full-time mother who starts a choir after her husband leaves her for a more glamorous woman. In July that year the actress was made a honorary Doctor of Letters by the University of Huddersfield. Following this, she reunited with director Coky Giedroyc, who had directed her in Oliver Twist, for a 2009 television adaptation of Emily Brontë's 1847 novel Wuthering Heights in which she played housekeeper Nelly Dean. In 2010 Lancashire portrayed Rosemary Nicholls, mother of a murder victim, in the three-part BBC drama Five Daughters; a depiction of the Ipswich serial murders from the perspective of the victims and their families. Though the pair never met, Lancashire felt it important to receive Nicholls consent before filming, and was later "humbled" and "relieved" to receive a feedback letter thanking her for her portrayal. Also in 2010 she guest-starred in the police drama series Inspector George Gently.
In March 2011 Lancashire began starring in a new Cameron Mackintosh musical, Betty Blue Eyes, at the Novello Theatre. In the production, a loose adaptation of the 1984 film A Private Function, she starred as Joyce Chilvers, an aspirational housewife who Lancashire describes as "brittle" and "capricious". Despite positive reviews the musical closed in London on 24 September 2011, after a run of just six months. For her performance Lancashire was nominated for the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical. In 2012 she appeared as lady's maid Miss Whisset in the penultimate episode of the 2010 revival of Upstairs Downstairs. In September 2012 Lancashire began appearing as Head of Ladieswear Miss Audrey in the six-part series The Paradise set in a department store in Northern England in the late 19th century. Lancashire described her character as "a true archetypal spinster" who has long denied herself a romantic life and who begins to feel undermined by a younger colleague.
Last Tango in Halifax and Happy Valley
Between November 2012 and December 2016 Lancashire appeared opposite Anne Reid and Derek Jacobi in the BBC drama series Last Tango in Halifax. In the series she plays Caroline, an Oxford-educated headmistress who feels that her mother's second marriage gives her "permission" to be herself. Caroline's same-sex relationship with a fellow teacher resulted in Lancashire receiving more fan mail than for any other role, largely from women telling her that the series had helped them to come out. Due to the under-representation of gay characters in television, Lancashire felt it particularly important that Caroline's experience would not be depicted inaccurately. In her portrayal she opted to focus on the "humanity" of the character, rather than her sexuality. Filming of the second series clashed with filming of the second series of The Paradise, which necessitated Lancashire leaving The Paradise partway through its second series. For her role as Caroline she was nominated for the British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in both 2013 and 2014, winning in 2014. At the 2015 Hay Festival Lancashire stated that of all the roles she has taken on in her career Caroline is the one she is most proud of, citing the "extraordinary impact" of the character. After airing three full series, Last Tango in Halifax returned for a fourth series in December 2016, consisting of two episodes which were promoted as "Christmas Specials".
In 2014, Lancashire re-united with Last Tango in Halifax writer Sally Wainwright on the crime drama Happy Valley. Wainwright was keen to write another role for Lancashire after being "blown away" by her performances in Last Tango in Halifax. Lancashire portrays single-grandparent Catherine Cawood, a police sergeant still dealing with the aftermath of her daughter's rape, and subsequent suicide, eight years earlier. Mark Lawson of The Guardian identified the performance as a career best for Lancashire, stating that she perfectly conveyed "the script's demandingly contradictory notes of tragedy, comedy, love, guilt, weakness and courage". For this role she earned the TV Choice Award for Best Actress in 2014, and the Royal Television Programme Award for Best Actress in 2015. In September 2014 the Radio Times listed her as one of the thirty most powerful women in British television and radio. In April 2015 she received her fourth BAFTA television nomination, her first in the Best Actress category. In June 2015 she was named Best Actress in a Drama Series at the Monte Carlo Television Festival.
Despite Lancashire's concerns regarding the decision to extend the story told in Happy Valley, Wainwright's "genuine" storytelling and "integrity" convinced her to return for a second series, which aired in 2016. Lancashire stated that she found the second series as "emotionally brutal" as the first; disclosing to The Independent that she inhabited Catherine's emotional pain for the entirety of the shoot. Whilst promoting the second series, Lancashire also refuted criticism about the level of violence towards women in the series, stating she "would never condone anything which [she] thought was salacious, titillating, or gratuitous" and that Catherine's experience represented an "absolutely honest portrayal of what a female police officer can be subjected to". For her role in the second series of Happy Valley, Lancashire won the 2017 National Television Award for Best Dramatic Performance, and the BAFTA TV award for Best Actress.
In March 2015 Lancashire began filming a television adaptation of Ronald Harwood's 1980 play The Dresser. In the teleplay, which aired in October 2015, Lancashire portrayed stage manager Madge, whose unrequited love for 'Sir' (Anthony Hopkins), the head of a repertory theatre company, pits her at odds with his dresser and confidant, Norman (Ian McKellen). Lancashire described The Dresser as "the greatest piece ever written about actors" and found both working with and observing McKellen and Hopkins – "two of the greatest actors ever" – an extraordinary experience. Following an airing on the American premium cable channel Starz in 2016, Lancashire was nominated for the 2016 Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Movie or Miniseries  Lancashire played Mrs Pike in the 2016 feature film Dad's Army, based on the situation comedy series of the same name. In early 2017, she began voicing the character of "Headmonstress" Mrs Twirlyhorn in the animated pre-school series School of Roars, which airs on Cbeebies.
Lancashire was due to appear opposite Martin Freeman in Labour of Love, a political comedy by James Graham, at the Noël Coward Theatre in late 2017 but pulled out on 1 September "on doctor's advice" and was replaced by Tamsin Greig. In 2018 she starred as Miriam –billed as an "experienced, no-nonsense social worker" – in Kiri, a four-part drama series written by Jack Thorne, co-produced by Channel 4 and the American on-demand service Hulu. The miniseries centres on a black girl living with a white foster couple who is murdered on a visit to her family, putting Miriam and the social services under scrutiny.
Awards and nominations
- "No. 61962". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 June 2017. p. B12.
- Robinson, Samantha (20 May 2014). "Happy Valley: Spotlight on Sarah Lancashire". Huddersfield Daily Examiner. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Duncan, Andrew (29 April 2014). "Sarah Lancashire on Happy Valley: I'm my own harshest critic". Radio Times. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
- Purser, Philip (8 November 2004). "Geoffrey Lancashire". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 24 June 2015.
- Leask, Annie (5 March 2000). "Interview: Sarah Lancashire: I'm Mum first...; Sarah Lancashire made her name in Coronation Street and is rarely off our screens. But to her, the most important role she plays is as mother to two young sons. She talks to Annie Leask". Sunday Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
- "Alumni". www.hulme-grammar.oldham.sch.uk. Oldham Hulme Grammar School. Retrieved 18 November 2014.
- "I haven't slept for 14 month and I can't pack in Smoking.. but I love being a mum". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. 4 June 2004. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
- Lancashire, Sarah (1 July 2004). "Mirror Works: My CV: Sarah Lancashire: Streets ahead; Forget Raquel, this lady is tough". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
- "Sarah Lancashire". Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Archived from the original on 18 May 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
- Iziren, Adeline (12 June 2004). "My first boss". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- "Sarah Lancashire urges local people: "Take a walk to your theatre — please!"". The Westmorland Gazette. Newsquest. 17 May 2014. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- "Sarah Lancashire". Independenttalent.com. Independent Talent Group. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
- Moir, Jan (11 May 2001). "'It has all been a bit bloody tricky'". Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 10 December 2014.
- Thompson, Ben (20 August 1995). "Real Lives: She refuses to be photographed out of character, and is always on her guard against those who would make Raquel a figure of fun. Joining Coronation Street really is like joining the Royal Family". The Independent. London, England: Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Kingsley, Hilary (8 January 2000). "Interview Sarah Lancashire: Conquering my secret fears; Sarah Lancashire walked out on two hit shows at the peak of her fame without harming her popularity, but only now is she starting to believe in herself". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- "Actress wins degree of recognition". Manchester Evening News. Manchester: Trinity Mirror. 13 March 2002. Retrieved 29 June 2012.
- McMullen, Marion (22 January 2000). "Lancashire hot spots!; Once Coronation Street's most famous barmaid, Sarah Lancashire is set to star in a gritty new drama for the BBC". Coventry Evening Telegraph. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Les Chatfield(director) (1 December 1989). "Joking". Watching. Series 4. Episode 1. ITV.
- Wolf, Matt (18 May 2011). "Sarah Lancashire on Co-Starring with a Beautiful Pig in London's Betty Blue Eyes". Broadway.com. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Maxwell, Dominic (21 November 2005). "Just a doll from the Street". The Times. London, England: News Corporation. Retrieved 6 February 2011.
- Kinnes, Sally (29 December 2002). "Interview: The great pretender". The Times. London, England: News Corporation. Archived from the original on 4 November 2014. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- John Stevenson (writer), Richard Signy (director), Mervyn Watson (producer) (25 January 1991). "Episode 3179". Coronation Street. ITV1.
- John Stevenson (writer), David Richards (director), Mervyn Watson (producer) (10 May 1991). "Episode 3224". Coronation Street.
- "26 September – 19 October Educating Rita". Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Phil Woods (writer), David Richards (director), Mervyn Watson (producer) (30 December 1991). "Episode 3325". Coronation Street.
- "Raquel's Corrie comeback". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 25 November 1999. Retrieved 5 January 2011.
- Busfield, Steve (9 November 1996). "Hankies out for Raquel's EastEnding; Street's week-long tearjerker signals fightback in soap war". Daily Mail. Associated Newspapers. Retrieved 5 January 2011.
- Fulton, Rick; Dingwall, John (13 March 2000). "Off The Record: Gavin leaves them Bushed". Daily Record. Glasgow, Scotland: Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 6 February 2011.
- "Mum's the word". The Scotsman. Johnston Press. 25 June 2004. Retrieved 9 December 2014.
- Owen, Jonathan (8 October 2006). "Celebrity on the couch: 40 faces of depression in the spotlight". The Independent. Independent Media Group. Retrieved 9 December 2014.
- MacDonald, Marianne (10 April 1996). "'Street' cruises for fall over video's brief honeymoon". The Independent. London, England: Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 6 February 2011.
- Ross, Deborah (24 January 2000). "Streetwise". The Independent. London, England: Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 6 February 2011.
- Wallace, Robert (5 October 1996). "Here's to a win for Raquel". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Millar, John (7 April 1997). "Last Night; Chiller that gets to heart of the matter". Daily Record. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- James, Rampton (23 August 1997). "Northern Exposure". The Independent. Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 21 May 2013.
- Hughes, Chris (29 November 1997). "A bloomin' flop's axed". The Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- "In the Frame– Clive Mantle; Sunday". Liverpool Daily Post, Liverpool, accessed via HighBeam Research. 5 January 2002. Retrieved 27 March 2013.
- "Viewers' favourites to be revealed". BBC News. 27 October 1998. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- "Pick of the box; It's all a bit too fishy for Seattle's finest". Daily Record (Scotland). Trinity Mirror. 26 February 1999. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Graham, Polly (30 April 1999). "Sarah: My heart isn't in it; Homesick star quits show". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
- Viner, Brian (9 December 2010). "Fifty things you didn't know about The Street". The Independent. London, England: Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- McMullen, Marion (18 March 2000). "Sunday TV: Highlights". Coventry Evening Telegraph. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Keal, Graham (10 June 2000). "Ditherer has a brush with law; Actor James Fleet specialises in men who wouldn't say boo to a goose. New BBC1 sitcom Chambers has him looking ruffled and defenceless in a court of law, and it suits him. Graham Keal reports". The Birmingham Post. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "TV: Sarah Plays It From The Heart". The Sunday People. Trinity Mirror. 17 September 2000. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "Ali G takes top TV award". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 4 September 2000. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "National Television Awards: The winners". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 10 October 2000. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- "Robinson booed at awards". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 11 March 2001. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "ITV signs up Lancashire". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 19 July 2000. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "Golden girl Sarah sticks to ITV parts". Coventry Evening Telegraph. Trinity Mirror. 20 July 2000. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "Street star Sarah weds". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 23 August 2001. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Hendry, Steve (4 February 2001). "Life's murder after a soap; The long road back to fame takes EastEnders stars from Albert Square to wet, windy Blackpool". Sunday Mail. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Ogle, Tina (23 July 2000). "We can't get enough of TV's famous five". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 25 June 2015.
- Hendry, Steve (17 December 2000). "How The Grinch stole the budget for Christmas TV; Christmas TV Preview". Sunday Mail. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- McGivern, Mark (11 September 2000). "Big Yin's Corrie-on comedy with TV barmaid". Daily Record. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- McMullen, Marion (26 May 2001). "Weekend TV: Sunday TV: Today's Highlights". Coventry Evening Telegraph. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- McMullen, Marion (30 June 2001). "Sunday TV: Today's Highlights". Coventry Evening Telegraph. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Conlan, Tara. "ITV unlocks Sarah's handcuffs". Daily Mail. DMG Media. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "New Queen Vic; Funny girl comes top of the pops". Sunday Mail. Trinity Mirror. 21 October 2001. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Forbes, SA (12 November 2005). "Sarah Lancashire, recipient of honorary degree". Library Archive. Salford: Salford University. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- Press Office (20 May 2016). "The Dresser: Cast Biographies" (PDF). Starz. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- "Life's good for Sarah off Street". Liverpool Echo. 8 April 2002. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Driscoll, Rob (9 April 2002). "My own depression helped to bring my new character to life; Sarah's experience of her darkest hours added realism to gritty new drama". Daily Record. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "Festival de Television de Monte-Carlo 2002" (PDF). 8 September 2009.
- Deans, Jason (2 April 2002). "Cold Feet grows up". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- Davies, Ashley (14 June 2002). "Life Begins for ITV without Lancashire". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Deans, Jason (27 June 2002). "Lancashire casts off golden handcuffs". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "Lancashire unlocks 'handcuffs' deal". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 27 June 2002. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- Hendry, Steve (29 September 2012). "TV preview; Sarah's law ITV's golden girl Sarah Lancashire on her most complex character yet". Daily Record. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
- "Sunday TV December 22: Cold call for Jack; Critic's Choice". Daily Record. Trinity Mirror. 21 December 2002. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- Quinn, Thomas (12 December 2002). "Having sex on the box gave me the giggles; Sarah Lancashire says her new role in Sons and Lovers left her blushing". Daily Record. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- Hoggart, Paul (13 January 2003). "TV Review". The Times. News UK. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Billen, Andrew (20 January 2003). "The Misery of Sex". New Statesman. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- "Cherished". BBC Drama. British Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 23 May 2005.
- "The Box: Future's Rosy for Sarah; Rose And Maloney ITV1, 9pm, Monday and Tuesday". Sunday Mercury. Trinity Mirror. 4 July 2005. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Marlow, Will (2 July 2004). "I love being a mum again". Huddersfield Daily Examiner. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Robson Green and Tina Hobley to star in second series of Afternoon Plays". BBC Press Office. British Broadcasting Corporation. 29 September 2003. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Revill, John (12 March 2004). "Art awards: Post journalist honoured at ceremony". The Birmingham Post. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "BBC Birmingham dominates Royal Television Society awards". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 10 October 2004. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Television Craft New Director — Fiction in 2005". BAFTA. Retrieved 23 May 2012.
- Shennan, Paddy (26 January 2005). "Paddy Shennan: Rose-tinted specs on the city". Liverpool Echo. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "Ex-Street star in Guys and Dolls". BBC News. 22 July 2005. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Teodorczuk, Tom (26 January 2006). "Fears for Guys and Dolls star". London Evening Standard. Daily Mail and General Trust. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Editorial Team (9 January 2006). "Rover's Raquel enters Who's Who". Manchester Evening News. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 29 June 2017.
- Davies, Caroline (10 Jan 2006). "Who's Who can't keep up with Rod's latest addition". The Daily Telegraph. London: Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
- "Sarah Lancashire, Sarah Parish, Alan Davies and Lenny Henry are among the stars of five new comedy drama singles coming to Friday nights on BBC One". BBC Drama. British Broadcasting Corporation. September 2006. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Simon, Jane (20 November 2006). "Disappearing Britain". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Wilkes, Neil (27 February 2007). "'Skins' star Mitch Hewer". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Sex, the City and Me". BBC Online. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- Mangan, Lucy (18 June 2007). "The weekend's TV: Sex, the City and Me". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Bradshaw, Peter (5 October 2007). "And When Did You Last See Your Father?". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "All-star cast announced for BBC adaptation of Oliver Twist". BBC press Office. 25 July 2007. Retrieved 23 May 2012.
- Simon, Jane (18 December 2007). "We love telly: We love it! – Twists in this Oliver Twist BBC1, 8pm". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Lark Rise to Candleford to be axed". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. 22 January 2011. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Hilton, Beth (2 April 2008). "Lancashire speaks about 'Who' role". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
- Price, Karen (2 April 2008). "We are building towards the most staggering climax you will ever see". The Western Mail. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "All The Small Things press pack: Sarah Lancashire plays Esther Caddick". BBC Press Office. 27 February 2009. Retrieved 8 April 2009.
- Akbor, Ruhubia (23 July 2009). "Former Street star honoured". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
- "Sarah Lancashire reaches new Heights!". What's On TV. IPC Media. 25 August 2009. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Tom Hardy is latest Heathcliff". Metro. DMG Media. 18 July 2008. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- Frost, Vicky (28 April 2010). "Five Daughters was BBC drama at its best". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- McLennan, Patrick (15 April 2010). "The cast explain why Five Daughters had to be made". What's On TV. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- "Peace and Love". BBC Drama. British Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Economic woes prompt Betty Blue Eyes to close". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. 23 August 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- Husband, Stuart (16 March 2011). "Behind the scenes of 'Betty Blue Eyes'". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 29 October 2014.
- "Why Betty failed to bring home the bacon". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. 14 September 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- "Cameron Mackintosh musical Betty Blue Eyes to close". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 23 August 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- "Full list: Olivier award winners 2012". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. 15 April 2012. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- Wigg, David (3 February 2012). "Racy upstairs, even racier downstairs: New faces, fresh scandal and lashings of romance... behind the scenes on the saucy new series". Daily Mail. DMG Media. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "Upstairs Downstairs Series 2 – 5. The Last Waltz". Radio Times. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "The Paradise". BBC Press Office. 12 September 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "Sarah Lancashire plays Miss Audrey". BBC Press Office. British Broadcasting Corporation. 12 September 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "Cast interviews". BBC Press Office. British Broadcasting Corporation. 13 August 2012. Retrieved 17 April 2013.
- Myall, Steve (19 November 2013). "Sarah Lancashire says her latest role has had a much bigger impact than Corrie's Raquel". Irish Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 19 August 2014.
- Hastings, Chris (29 September 2013). "It's trouble in Paradise after star Sarah Lancashire quits in the middle of series, blaming clash with other BBC show". Daily Mail. DMG Media. Retrieved 2 October 2013.
- Plunkett, John; Halliday, Josh (12 May 2013). "Last Tango dances off with Bafta prize for 'love story about people over 35'". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 10 September 2013.
- Hogan, Michael (18 May 2014). "TV Baftas 2014: as it happened". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 19 August 2014.
- "Older women coming out as lesbians thanks to BBC, says Sarah Lancashire". The Daily Telegraph. 24 May 2015. Retrieved 24 June 2015.
- Travis, Ben (19 December 2016). "Last Tango in Halifax, BBC1: Sally Wainwright and Sarah Lancashire reunite for Christmas special". Evening Standard. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- Jones, Hannah (28 May 2014). "Happy Valley: Writer Sally Wainwright on TV's most talked about show". Wales Online. Retrieved 19 August 2014.
- Lawson, Mark (4 June 2014). "Happy Valley TV review – Sarah Lancashire gives her best performance". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 26 June 2015.
- Rigby, Sam (8 September 2014). "Sherlock, EastEnders lead winners at TVChoice Awards 2014". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 10 December 2014.
- Hemley, Matthew (18 March 2015). "Sarah Lancashire and Tom Hollander win at Royal Television Society Programme Awards". The Stage. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
- "The Radio Times 30 most powerful women on TV and radio". Radio Times. 2 September 2014. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
- Ritman, Alex (8 April 2015). "BAFTA TV Awards: Benedict Cumberbatch Gets Third Nomination for 'Sherlock'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 8 April 2015.
- Harp, Justin (18 June 2015). "Happy Valley, The Missing and Lilyhammer win at Golden Nymph Awards". Digital Spy. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
- Marland, Sean (4 February 2016). "Sarah Lancashire: I'm back for more 'emotional brutality' on Happy Valley 2". What's on TV. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
- Pidd, Helen (26 January 2016). "What makes Happy Valley TV's most realistic police drama?". The Independent. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
- Frost, Caroline (26 January 2017). "Sarah Lancashire Collects A NTA Award – 8 Things You Didn't Know About 'Happy Valley' Star". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
- Ellis-Petersen, Hannah (14 May 2017). "BBC biggest winner at Baftas as Happy Valley and Damilola head award roll call". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
- "Production commences on The Dresser starring Anthony Hopkins and Ian McKellen". BBC Media Centre. 3 March 2015. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
- "The Dresser / Interview with Sarah Lancashire". BBC. 21 October 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- Lincoln, Ross (14 November 2016). "Critics' Choice TV Nominations Unveiled". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 17 May 2017.
- Child, Ben (8 October 2014). "She's in the army now: Catherine Zeta-Jones joins cast of Dad's Army film". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 24 October 2014.
- "Top TV actors become monsters for new CBeebies animated series". BBC Press Office. 24 January 2017. Retrieved 17 May 2017.
- "Martin Freeman and Sarah Lancashire star in James Graham's Labour of Love at the Noel Coward Theatre". londontheatre.co.uk. 19 May 2017. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
- Bamigboye, Baz (19 May 2017). "Sarah Lancashire and Martin Freeman stage a Labour comback... and there are 20,000 tickets up for grabs". Daily Mail. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
- "Sarah Lancashire pulls out of James Graham's Labour of Love". thestage.co.uk. 1 September 2017. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- Sherwin, Adam (6 July 2017). "Happy Valley's Sarah Lancashire to star in Channel 4 mixed-race adoption drama". i. London: Johnston Press. Retrieved 6 July 2017.
- Entertainment & Arts team (16 June 2017). "In pictures: Entertainment and arts honours". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 17 June 2017.