Churchill’s Secret's Daisy Lewis

Tea Time Tidbit for the week of September 5, 2016

Next Sunday evening, Michael Gambon stars as British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in MASTERPIECE’S Churchill’s Secret. This full length television film is based on a true incident in the statesman’s life, when he suffered a debilitating stroke in 1953 at the age of 78.

Tea Time Tidbit

Daisy Lewis

I’m sure you’ll recognize a number of faces in the program. Daisy Lewis, for instance, plays Churchill’s youngest daughter, Mary.

We last saw Lewis as the outspoken school teacher Miss Bunting in Downton Abbey. It appears that in real-life Lewis grew up being suited more to life "above stairs" than her working class Downton character. Her mother was a debutant and her father is chairman of The Groucho Club, a private club whose members include various celebrities in the publishing, media, entertainment and arts industries. He also owns a large stake in the four-star Sloane Square Hotel in London.

Lewis grew up in Dorset and attended the same prep school as two of the Queen’s grandchildren. As a teenager, she was a member of England’s National Youth Theatre, an organization she still actively supports.

As the 5’ 1” redhead once joked when being interviewed, “I was very, very, very ugly as a child and the only place that I kind of felt safest was in the drama lessons; a part of a theater company. At least when I couldn’t get a boyfriend in real life, I could get a boyfriend in the play.” Instead of going to drama school though, Lewis choose instead to attend King’s College in London, where she studied English literature.

Like her on-screen Downton persona who helped tutor kitchen maid Daisy, Lewis also reportedly enjoys teaching. Apparently it’s something she’s been doing to “fill in between roles” since she left university. In fact, right before she got her Downton role, she was tutoring in Wiltshire, where she was living at the time with her parents.

Downton creator Julian Fellowes also had a hand in Lewis’s first film role, in 2009's From Time to Time, which he directed and she appeared in when she was 24. The film also starred Dame Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonneville and Allen Leech. Lewis’s first television job was in a show you might have seen on Afternoon Tea called After You’ve Gone and she was also in Inspector Lewis and Doctor Who. Most recently Lewis has been appearing on stage in London’s West End, in a play called Bug, opposite the Grantchester actor James Norton.

Churchill’s Secret airs on MASTERPIECE at 8pm Sunday, September 11th.

To contact Heather:
Address: Afternoon Tea
Maryland Public Television
11767 Owings Mills Blvd.
Owings Mills, MD 21117

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Afternoon Tea is Maryland Public Television's weekday presentation of British programs.
Our host and Tea Lady is Heather Sanderson.
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