Search

Emma Thompson’s mother Phyllida Law on why she can’t feel proud of OBE

17:00 18 June 2014

Emma Thompson and her mother Phyllida Law receive honorary degrees at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow. Picture: PA Archive

Emma Thompson and her mother Phyllida Law receive honorary degrees at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow. Picture: PA Archive

PA Archive/Press Association Images

Most people honoured by the Queen express shock or disbelief at receiving an award. But film and TV actress Phyllida Law, of West Hampstead, was so surprised about her OBE she was certain the letter was sent to the wrong person.

Ms Law, mother of actresses Sophie and Emma Thompson, spent days ringing theatre agents to make sure the award was not meant for film director Phyllida Lloyd, who was in fact made a CBE in the 2010 Honours List.

“I was so astonished I just assumed it belonged to another Phyllida,” the 81-year-old said.

“Why me? I haven’t done anything. Perhaps I had better start! I don’t know what it’s for really. I’ve survived, perhaps it’s that.”

She was given the nod in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to drama and for charitable services.

Born in Glasgow in 1932, Ms Law married Magic Roundabout creator Eric Thompson in 1957 and kicked off her acting career soon afterwards.

His death in 1982 after 25 years of marriage hit her and her two daughters very hard but the tight-knit family has remained close.

The veteran actress has performed alongside both her daughters, with Sophie in the 1996 Hollywood adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma, and with Emma in children’s film Nanny McPhee, Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing and 1992 comedy Peter’s Friends.

Ms Law has also been an active charity campaigner as president of the Theatrical Guild, raising money for backstage theatre staff.

She is also vocal in support of glaucoma charity Fight for Sight, which she backed after watching her mother lose her sight to the hereditary condition.

Proud

Despite her achievements, the self-styled “ambulant witch” says she cannot feel any pride in what she does.

“If I mend a plug, I feel proud of myself,” she said. “I feel proud if I don’t fall off the edge of the stage. But I can’t say yes, I was so wonderful. It doesn’t come naturally.”

Ms Law is not the only star to receive plaudits in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Tufnell Park actor Damian Lewis, who opened Highgate’s Christmas Festival in November last year, was also made an OBE for services to drama.

Ms Law will be in discussion with Piers Plowright at Prom’s at St Jude’s at Henrietta Barnett School in Central Square, Hampstead Garden Suburb, on Saturday, June 28.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Yesterday, 09:00
Claire Meir part of a charity raising money for books for Syrian refugees in Turkey. Photo: Nigel Sutton

A mother was inspired to fundraise to buy books for Syrian children in Turkey after imagining what it would be like if her son was fleeing devastating civil war.

Yesterday, 09:00
The primary school pupils enjoyed a range of workshops. Photo: Jacqui Sinnatt

Camden and Islington primary school children enjoyed a taste of creativity away from the classroom at the Primary Careers Fair held at the British Library.

Fri, 17:03
Ray Davies is returning to Hornsey Town Hall

Ray Davies performed one of his first gigs at the iconic venue when he was still at school, before going on to form The Kinks

Fri, 15:37
The coffin arrives for the funeral of David Gest arriving at Golders Green Crematorium in north London.

Mourners have remembered music producer and TV star David Gest at a funeral service in Golders Green.

Fri, 13:34
PC Shane Moulds has been dismissed for misconduct

A Camden police constable has been sacked for punching a member of the public he was arresting and hurling abuse at him, calling him a ‘posh twat’

Fri, 13:33
Big Green Bookshop is raising money for Haringey schools.  Joint owner Tim West  pictured. Photo: Nigel Sutton

Two book owners was sickened when an opportunistic thief stole £600, but their customers were “unbelievably” supportive and in a “tsunami of loveliness” helped them raise more than nine times the amount in donations.

Fri, 12:39
Found dead: David Gest (Picture: Ian West/PA Wire)

The funeral of David Gest is set to take place this afternoon at Golders Green crematorium, according to reports.

Thu, 15:57
The case will be heard at the Court of Appeal

A man convicted of murdering a reclusive author in his Hampstead home will have his case heard at the Court of Appeal because of alleged police failings.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe