Born in 1953
Do I look like a frolicker?
Lesley Nicol admits she’s enjoying her new found celebrity status and says she gets recognized by Hollywood stars and commoners alike. Nicol is best known for playing the feisty cook Mrs. Patmore on Downton Abbey. These days, the Downton Abbey writers seem to be playing favourites – Mrs Patmore gets the lionshare of good lines, trumping the Dowager. In real life, Lesley Nicol can’t cook her way out of a cardboard box, leaving meal preparation to her husband. Nicol was flooded with invitations to appear on cooking shows after the success of Downton, but turned them all down because she’s says her cooking skills don’t measure up.
Before Downton fame, Lesley Nicol played Mrs Beaver in the 1988 BBC adaptation of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and the Queen Giant in the 1990 adaptation of The Silver Chair. Lesley Nicol is best known as a stage actress in musicals like Mamma Mia, Jesus Christ Superstar and East is East. She also appeared in the 1999 film version of East is East. Lesley Nicol guest-starred on numerous British television series. In the mid 2000s, Nicol played a character called Aunt-Tea in series of commercials for Tetley tea, including one with Sex & the City star Kim Cattrall.