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Sarah LancashireBorn: Sat 10th October 1964 (age: 50)
Sarah Lancashire (born in Oldham, Lancashire) is an English actress, probably best recognised for her role as Raquel Watts in Coronation Street. She graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1986.
Lancashire's first recurring television role is still her best known. She played barmaid Raquel Watts in the ITV1 soap opera Coronation Street from 1991 to 1996, reappearing for one last episode in 1999. Raquel was a sweet, if somewhat dippy character, who was a firm favourite with viewers of the long running show. She had previously appeared on the programme in November 1987 playing Wendy Farmer.
After leaving Coronation Street, rather than struggle to find work in other shows after playing such a well known character (a fate that has befallen many soap opera actors), Lancashire worked in a number of high profile series. From 1997 to 1999 she played Ruth Goddard in the ITV1 drama series Where The Heart Is, and in 1999 she appeared in the BBC sitcom Murder Most Horrid, which also starred comedienne Dawn French.
Lancashire has appeared in the BBC Radio 4 legal sitcom Chambers which later moved onto television. In 2000, she starred in the dramaSeeing Red, portraying actress Coral Atkins, who founded a care home for children. and won two British television industry awards as a result. In 2001 she went on to star in the acclaimed BBC drama series Clocking Off, a role that saw her win the Best Actress award at theTelevision and Radio Industry Club Awards. Lancashire has continued to work regularly since, notably in a BBC drama portraying Angela Cannings, a British woman who was convicted of killing her two baby sons but was released when medical evidence given at her trial was deemed dubious. She has recently appeared in two series of the ITV1 drama series Rose and Maloney.
In 2002, she played the role of Meg Bartlet in the psychological thriller tele-movie The Cry. Her character Meg, a social worker grieving the stillbirth of her daughter, befriends a woman called Christine whose baby daughter Eleanor suffers from breathing problems. Gradually, Meg becomes convinced the child is being abused and eventually abducts her after the claims make headline news. Changing her car and appearance and using the name Annie Lomax, she heads to Cheshire where Christine used to live, determined to prove that Eleanor's mother is guilty of abuse.
In September 2006, she starred in a BBC comedy drama Angel Cake, and in 2007 she played Mary Miles in the E4 teen Comedy/DramaSkins. In April 2008, she appeared in "Partners in Crime", the opening episode of the 2008 series of Doctor Who, as "Miss Foster, an enigmatic and powerful businesswoman". She also narrates the BBC drama series Lark Rise to Candleford. Filmed in August to December 2008, Lancashire stars in All the Small Things alongside Neil Pearson and Richard Fleeshman. She plays Esther Caddick, a full-time mother and choir member in the short TV series Heart and Soul.
On 5 December 2005, she returned to the West End stage to play Miss Adelaide in the Donmar Warehouse production of Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly Theatre. Her taking over from Jane Krakowski coincided with Nigel Harman's taking over of the role of Sky Masterson fromEwan McGregor. Lancashire suffered a reported chest infection and was forced to leave the production officially on 7 February 2006 having not performed since the matinee performance on 4 January 2006.
Lancashire's last role to date was that of Joyce Chilvers in the new Cameron Macintosh production of Betty Blue Eyes, which ran in the Novello Theatre in London until September 2011.
In 2005, Lancashire made her directorial debut on an episode of the BBC series The Afternoon Play and was nominated for the Best New Director award at the BAFTA television awards.
In 2006 she presented an edition of the Five documentary social heritage series Disappearing Britain in which she interviewed people with memories of Wakes Week holidays in Blackpool by Cotton mill workers in the early 20th Century. It included an investigation of her own family history and holidays by her great grandfather Tom Lancashire in Llandudno.
Biography from the Wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA