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Sarah Parish

Last updated 06 June 2015

Sarah Parish - Image Credit: Getty Images
Image Credit: Getty Images (this image appears for illustrative purposes only and no attempt is made to supersede any copyright attributed to it)

Sarah Janet Mary Parish

Born: Fri 7th June 1968 (age: 47)


Sarah Parish is an English actress. She is known for her work on TV series including: The Pillars of the Earth, Peak Practice, Hearts and Bones, Cutting It, Doctor Who, Mistresses, Merlin, the BBC TV series Atlantis and the ITV medical drama, Monroe.

Early life

Parish was born in Yeovil, Somerset, to Bill and Thelma Parish; she has a sister, Julie, and a brother, musician John Parish. She was educated at the local Preston School and Yeovil College. She began acting at an early age and believes her first stage appearance was aged two in a pantomime in the village of Tintinhull playing the pearl in an oyster. She later attended Yeovil Youth Theatre.


After training at the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts in London, her appearance in a cult advert for Manchester-based Boddingtons bitter in 1994 (as Vera, who likes nothing better than "a good rub down with chip fat") led to a series of roles as Northern women, including Dawn Rudge in Peak Practice (1993), Allie Henshall in Cutting It (2002), Annie Naylor in Trust and Natalie Holden in Blackpool (2004). She starred alongside Debra Messing in the movie The Wedding Date, had a small role in The Holiday, which starred Jude Law, and appeared as the Empress of the Racnoss in the Christmas 2006 Doctor Who episode "The Runaway Bride".

Parish's most recent appearance was in the one-off drama Recovery. She also starred in the BBC series Shakespeare Retold in which she played Beatrice. She returned as GP Katie Roden in series two and threes of Mistresses which was first shown on BBC One in February 2009. She played Lady Catrina in the BBC television series Merlin. In November 2009, she starred in a short film to promote Somerset, commissioned by inward investment agency Into Somerset. In 2011, Parish co-starred in ITV's medical drama Monroe, alongside James Nesbitt. She also appeared in the BBC TV series Atlantis, playing one of the main cast characters, Pasiphaƫ. Since March 2014 she has played the role of Anna Rampton in two series of the BBC comedy W1A.

Personal life

Formerly a resident of Islington, Parish married James Murray on 15 December 2007 in Hampshire, where they currently reside. It was announced she was pregnant with their first child on 18 January 2008 and due on Parish's 40th birthday, 7 June 2008. Their daughter Ella-Jayne was born with a heart defect and died at the age of eight months in January 2009. In her memory, Parish and Murray are raising funds for the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at Southampton General Hospital. Parish later gave birth to a second daughter. When asked about her hobbies and interests Parish cites her vegetable garden.

Biography from the wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA