Thursday 22 February 2018

Happy Birthday Sheila Hancock!

Many happy returns to the wonderful Sheila Hancock who celebrates her birthday today. Sheila is well known and often celebrated for her long and illustrious career on stage, film and television. 

Sheila has also become a successful author in more recent years, publishing two memoirs - one about her life with her late husband, the actor John Thaw and another on her life after his sad death in 2002. She has also written her first novel, Miss Carter's War and I was lucky enough to attend a Q&A on this back in 2014.

Sheila has featured in many classic films and television shows over the years but is mainly known to Carry On fans for her definitive performance as Senna Pod, wife of Hengist, inventor of the square wheel, in Carry On Cleo. Sheila was on wonderful form opposite Kenneth Connor. She also worked with Carry On favourite Esma Cannon in the early 1960s sitcom, The Rag Trade and several years later, alongside her life long friend Dilys Laye in My Digby Darling. 

In the early 1960s Sheila co-starred with Kenneth Williams in the West End revue, One Over The Eight. Unlike many of Kenneth's other leading ladies, Hancock took very little of his usual pranks and nonsense, stood up to Kenny and the two became close friends. Sheila even appeared on Just A Minute alongside Kenneth in the late 1960s. It wasn't until recently that I realised Sheila also shares a birthday with the great man.

So whatever Sheila is up to today, I hope she has a wonderful birthday!

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan

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