English character actress with a penchant for genteel aristocrats and kindly mothers. The daughter of teachers, she "spent some time selling shoes in Reading" before entering the acting profession. Aged eighteen, she studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and made her debut in repertory theatre at Amersham in 1955. Rosemary Leach enjoyed a prolific and varied career in both supporting and leading roles on the screen (though, by her own account, preferred radio and the stage). She became a familiar presence, most notably in television period dramas and sitcoms. Her roles have included Queen Victoria in Disraeli: Portrait of a Romantic (1978) (she also played Queen Elizabeth II on at least four occasions on both stage and screen),scatterbrained Aunt Fenny in The Jewel in the Crown (1984) (which fostered her fascination with India and resulted in several subsequent visits) , the swindled widow Joan Plumleigh-Bruce -- victim of 1930's social climbing con man Ralph Ernest Gorse -- in The Charmer (1987), one of three nannies working for wealthy families in Edwardian London's exclusive Berkeley Square (1998),the verger's wife, Mrs. Tope, in The Mystery of Edwin Drood (1993) and Zoë Wanamaker's habitually Martini-imbibing mother Grace in My Family (2000). She was twice nominated for BAFTA awards, latterly as Best Supporting Actress for her role as the kindly Mrs. Honeychurch in A Room with a View (1985). Her own personal favourite roles have included Miss Adelaide in a 1973 Birmingham Repertory Theatre production of "Guys and Dolls" and that of eccentric real life author Helene Hanff in "84 Charing Cross Road" (1981, Ambassador Theatre, London) for which she received an Olivier Award as Best Actress.
- Mrs Honeychurch
- Gina Ekdal, Hedvig's mother
- Mrs. Dangle
- Mrs. Charlie Inchcliff (landlady)
Contribute to this page
Suggest an edit or add missing content
More to explore
How much have you seen?
Keep track of how much of Rosemary Leach’s work you have seen. Go to your list.