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Lilian Baron (born 24 March 1939), known professionally as Lynda Baron, is an English actress and comedian, best known for playing Nurse Gladys Emmanuel in the BBC comedy series Open All Hours (1976–1985) and its sequel, Still Open All Hours (2013–2016).
24 March 1939
Urmston, Lancashire, England
|Television||Open All Hours (1976–1985)|
Come Outside (1993–1997)
Still Open All Hours (2013–16)
John Lee (m. 1966)
Baron's early television roles included small parts in Crossroads (1964), Up Pompeii (1970), Z-Cars (1971), and the British horror film Hands of the Ripper (1971). Baron appeared on television in BBC-3 (1965), a series in the vein of That Was The Week That Was, involving some of the same performers. She also alternated with Annie Ross as the resident singer on Not So Much a Programme, More a Way of Life (1965). Baron has taken part in the BBC science fiction series Doctor Who three times. She was heard as a singer in the 1966 serial The Gunfighters. She appeared in front of the cameras as Captain Wrack in the 1983 serial Enlightenment, and again in 2011 in Closing Time as Val.
Baron is best known for playing Nurse Gladys Emmanuel in the popular BBC sitcom Open All Hours with Ronnie Barker and David Jason which ran for four series in 1976, 1981 to 1982 and in 1985, and was subsequently voted eighth in Britain's Best Sitcom in 2004.
In the 1970s and 1980s, Baron co-starred in the ITV sitcom Oh No, It's Selwyn Froggitt! and the forgotten BBC sitcom A Roof Over My Head. She had small parts in Minder and Last of the Summer Wine. In 1986, she acted in a party political broadcast for the SDP–Liberal Alliance. Baron also appeared in the 1987 Christmas special of The Two Ronnies. Baron then went on to appear in the BBC Two comedy series KYTV.
In the 1990s, Baron played Auntie Pat in five episodes of the ITV sitcom The Upper Hand (1992–93). Baron then went on to star in the children's television series Come Outside (1993–97) playing Auntie Mabel, an everyday woman living in a bungalow, set in Denham flying round on various adventures in her spotted aeroplane with her dog Pippin.
In 1997, Baron played Renee Turnbull in Coronation Street and took guest roles in Dinnerladies (1998), The Mrs Bradley Mysteries (1998), Sunburn (1999), Nancherrow (1999) and Goodnight Sweetheart (1999).
Baron continued to work regularly on television and the stage in the 2000s, with credits including Fat Friends (2000–2005), The Bill (2000), Doctors (2000, 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2014), Peak Practice (2001), Holby City (2002 and 2006), Down to Earth (2005), Rome (2005) and Casualty (2009).
Baron briefly appeared in the BBC One soap opera EastEnders in 2006 as Linda Clarke, the mother of Jane Beale. In September 2008, it was announced that Baron would be returning to EastEnders. She appeared regularly in the series from November 2008 to February 2009. On 8 April 2016, it was announced that Baron would return to the soap once again alongside John Partridge. She appeared on screen in May and June 2016.
In August 2010, Baron appeared in an episode of Agatha Christie's Marple on ITV. In September 2010, Baron appeared in a one-off television drama The Road to Coronation Street on BBC Four, a programme looking back at the early days of the British television soap opera Coronation Street. Baron portrayed actress Violet Carson who played Ena Sharples in the soap. Baron was nominated for the 2011 British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress for this role.
On 26 December 2013, Baron reprised her role in a special one-off episode of Open All Hours on BBC One, entitled Still Open All Hours. It was watched by 12.23 million viewers, almost a 40% share in audience figures on Boxing Day. The following day, Baron took part in Open All Hours: A Celebration, a programme looking back on the sitcom. Following the success of the Christmas episode, the cast made a full series, which began on 26 December 2014. A second series started in December 2015. A third series began in December 2016, but Baron was unable to return because of other commitments. Baron did not appear in the fourth series. It is believed that she has quit the show.
Baron's film appearances include roles in The Small World of Sammy Lee (1963), Hot Millions (1968), Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter (1968), Can Heironymus Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness? (1969), Tiffany Jones (1973), and the Hammer film Hands of the Ripper (1971) as an ill-fated prostitute. She also appeared in the Barbra Streisand film Yentl (1983), Carry On Columbus (1992), Colour Me Kubrick (2005) and Scoop (2006) directed by Woody Allen.
In 1987, Baron starred in the London production of the musical Follies at the Shaftesbury Theatre. In 2007, she starred with Orlando Bloom and Tim Healy in a stage version of In Celebration. In May and June 2009, she appeared at the Menier Chocolate Factory in a production of Rookery Nook by Ben Travers.
From October 2010 to February 2011, Baron starred with Maureen Lipman and Roy Hudd in a West End production of When We Are Married by J.B. Priestley. In March 2013, she appeared in a production of D.H. Lawrence's play The Daughter-in-Law at the Sheffield Crucible. She appeared at the Minerva Theatre, Chichester from April to May 2014 in Stevie by Hugh Whitemore, alongside Zoe Wanamaker and Chris Larkin. Baron again appeared in the play from March to April 2015 at the Hampstead Theatre.
In 1995, Baron voiced the character of Nanny Ogg in the BBC Radio 4 adaptation of the Discworld novel Wyrd Sisters. In April 2012, Richard Kates released an album entitled There's Something About You, which featured Baron performing the track "A Hard Man is Good to Find". On 11 May 2012, Baron appeared in the Afternoon Play on BBC Radio 4, Mrs Lowry and Son, playing the mother of artist LS Lowry.
In 1966, Baron married John M. Lee. They have two children, Sarah and Morgan.
|1962||The Rag Trade||June|
|1966||Doctor Who||Singer||Episode: "The Gunfighters"|
|1976–1985||Open All Hours||Nurse Gladys Emmanuel||25 episodes|
|1977||Oh No, It's Selwyn Froggitt!||Vera Parkinson|
|1983||Last of the Summer Wine||Lilly Bless Her||Episode: Getting Sam Home|
|Doctor Who||Captain Wrack||Episode: "Enlightenment"|
|1992–1993||The Upper Hand||Aunty Pat|
|1993–1997||Come Outside||Auntie Mabel||40 episodes|
|1997||Coronation Street||Renee Turnbull|
|2000||The Bill||Sadie Tyler||Episode: "Catch a Falling Star|
|Big Kids||Aunt Muriel||Episode: "Aunt Muriel"|
|2002–2005||Fat Friends||Norma Patterson||19 episodes|
|2006, 2008–09, 2016||EastEnders||Linda Clarke||32 episodes|
|2009||Casualty||Molly||Episode: "As Others See Us"|
|2010||The Road to Coronation Street||Violet Carson|
|Agatha Christie's Marple||Mrs. Coppins||Episode: "The Pale Horse"|
|Doctors||Ag Penrose||9 episodes|
|2011||Doctor Who||Val||Episode: "Closing Time"|
|2013–2016||Still Open All Hours||Nurse Gladys Emmanuel||13 episodes|
|2016||Citizen Khan||Clarenza||1 episode|
|2017||Father Brown||Mrs Rudge||Episode 5.12 "The Theatre of the Invisible"|
- The Small World of Sammy Lee (1963)
- Hot Millions (1968)
- Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter (1968)
- Can Heironymus Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness? (1969)
- Hands of the Ripper (1971)
- Tiffany Jones (1973)
- Yentl (1983)
- Carry On Columbus (1992)
- Colour Me Kubrick (2005)
- Scoop (2006)
- "Lynda Baron – Questions and Answers – Interview". Londontheatre.co.uk. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
- "Social Democrat Party Election Broadcast: SDP/Liberal Alliance(06/05/86)". BFI Film and TV Database. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
- "Lynda Baron". Corrie.net. 7 December 1997. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
- "Lynda Baron returns to 'EastEnders' – EastEnders News – Soaps". Digital Spy. 9 September 2008. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
- "John Partridge and Lynda Baron to return to EastEnders". EastEnders News & Spoilers. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
- "EastEnder to star in Corrie drama". BBC News. 28 June 2010.
- "Sir David Jason back for Open All Hours Christmas show". BBC News. 7 October 2013.
- "http". //www.incelebration.co.uk. Retrieved 7 August 2012. External link in
- Billington, Michael (1 May 2009). "Theatre review: Rookery Nook, Menier Chocolate Factory, London". The Guardian.
- "Lipman brings Priestley to Garrick | Official London Theatre – Your London Shows guide". Official London Theatre. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
- There's Something About You by Various Artists on Amazon
- "Radio 4 Programmes – Afternoon Drama, Mrs Lowry and Son". BBC. 11 May 2012. Retrieved 7 August 2012.