Perhaps one of the most famous of British actresses from the 1940's due almost entirely to her starring role in "Brief Encounter" (1945). Funnily enough she did little film work compared to some of the other actresses mentioned here, most of her experience coming from an extensive theatrical background. Nevertheless, many identified with her as what they imagined typical housewives were like during the second world war and just after. Her popularity has made her an icon of her age with almost a cult following as with the film.

She was born in Richmond, Surrey on the 18th of December 1908 and studied at RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art's) in London. During the period 1928 to 1942 she was exclusively a stage actress and made her film debut in "In Which We Serve" (1942) with Noel Coward.

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