Penelope Wilton: Born June 3, 1946 (Gemini)
Penelope Wilton was an accomplished stage actor before breaking into television and the big screen. She is best known to American audiences for films like The French Lieutenant’s Woman, Iris, Cry Freedom and Calendar Girls. Her most notable TV role (before Downton Abbey) was staring opposite Richard Briers in the BBC comedy Ever Decreasing Circles which ran for five years. She has also appeared in the famous TV show Dr. Who.
Wilton has been married to two distinguished British actors, Daniel Massey and Ian Holm. After Sir Ian Holm was knighted in 1998, Penelope Wilton became Lady Holm until she was divorced. Wilton comes from a family of show business. Her aunt and uncle were actors, Bill Travers and Linden Travers. Wilton’s grandparents owned theatres. Penelope has appeared as busybody Isobel Crawley on Downton Abbey since it started in 2010.