Abigail Thaw was born in London to John Thaw and Sally Alexander in October 1965. She was brought up by her mother in a large house in Pimlico. Alexander was an active member of the women's movement and Abigail would often go on marches with her mother and the other families in the house. She would visit her father regularly, taking trips up north to see her paternal grandfather in Manchester. Abigail has a half-brother, Daniel (by her mother and her second husband), as well as a stepsister Melanie Thaw and her half-sister Joanna Thaw (born to John Thaw and his wife Sheila Hancock). After graduating from school, Abigail spent a year in Italy. After her return, she went to RADA, a year behind her stepsister Melanie. At RADA, she met her long-term partner Nigel Whitmey. They have never married. Abigail worked with her stepsister Melanie in the Royal Exchange Theatre production of Pride and Prejudice in 1991. She has also made some television appearances. In 1997, she gave birth to her daughter Molly Mae. Shortly after Molly's birth Abigail starred in BBC1's Vanity Fair (1998). After the death of her father in 2002, Abigail found herself too grief-stricken to work. She also suffered a miscarriage. Happily in 2003, however, she gave birth to her second child, daughter Talia. She also returned to work starring alongside her stepmother and taken a creative writing course. She wrote a poem called father's 60th birthday present, which she read at her father's memorial service.
"I have a couple of pairs of his socks that I wear all the time and think of him. one minute I'm fine and then the next minute, suddenly a smell or a joke hits me and I'm off in floods of tears and hopeless for the rest of the day." - on her father, John Thaw.
Sadly, it is often a death that prompts people to write. It's a way of conversing with the dead and definitely helps in a therapeutic way. But, unlike Sheila, what I write isn't for the public eye, not yet!
I made a conscious decision not to get married at the beginning of our relationship. I was terrified of marriage not working because I had seen it fail so many times.
My upbringing has definitely influenced how I want to raise my own daughter, Molly Mae, who's five. I want her to grow up believing that she can be whatever she wants to be and that there are no doors closed to her because of her sex. She is generally a very confident child, but what she has referred to recently, which frightens my partner Nigel and me, is concerns about her body image. Last summer, for example, before I was pregnant again, she said, "Your tummy's thin. Why have I got a big round tummy? I want a thin tummy." Now, that might just reflect the fact that little girls are fascinated with their mothers' bodies, but I found it quite alarming, especially since all her friends are into crop tops and showing off their bellybuttons.