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Mollie Sugden Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (2)  | Trivia (18)  | Personal Quotes (3)

Overview (4)

Born in Keighley, Yorkshire, England, UK
Died in Guildford, Surrey, England, UK  (heart failure)
Birth NameIsobel Mary Sugden
Height 5' 3" (1.6 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Best remembered as 'Mrs. Slocombe' on the British comedy "Are You Being Served?" Mollie Sugden was born in Keighley, West Yorkshire. She attended Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Her first television role came in 1962 with the series "Hugh and I," which ran for four seasons. In 1972, she won the role of the head of the ladies department at Grace Brothers Department Store, 'Mrs. Betty Slocombe,' on "Are You Being Served." Her character was known for her change in hair color, as well as her affection for her cat. The series ran between 1972 and 1985. She reprised the role in the 1990s for the short live revival, "Grace & Favour." After the initial run of "Are You Being Served" ended in 1985 she continued to work on television including the series "My Husband and I," in which she starred with real-life husband, William Moore. In 2002, she was honored on her 80th birthday with the special "Celebrating Mollie Sugden: An Are You Being Served?" Mollie Sugden died after a long illness at age 86, just months after her "Are You Being Served? co-star Wendy Richard.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Spouse (1)

William Moore (29 March 1958 - 24 April 2000) ( his death) ( 2 children)

Trade Mark (2)

"And I am unanimous in this!"
Her frequently changing, exotic hair colors.

Trivia (18)

Attended Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London, England, UK.
Twin sons, Robin Moore and Simon Moore, born October 1963, when Sugden was the relatively advanced age (for pregnancy) of 41.
Has five grandchildren from her two sons, Robin and Simon.
After the first episode of of Are You Being Served? (1972), she decided her hair was too plain for the outrageous personality of Mrs. Slocombe, so she bleached it white, then dying it a different colour for each subsequent episode in the first season. Unfortunately, the ends of bleached hair become "spongy," causing the dyes never to entirely wash out. Her twin 10 year old boys didn't appreciate being picked up from school "by a mother with multi-coloured ends." So, after the first season, when she saw the show was a hit, she asked the BBC to supply her with wigs instead of dying her hair a different colour every week.
Two of her five grandchildren are named James and Emily.
She remained great friends with the surviving cast members of Are You Being Served? (1972), attending several of their funerals before her own death, including John Inman in 2007 and Wendy Richard in 2009, just a few months before her own death.
Appeared on season three of Little Britain (2003) as herself. The character of Liz (David Walliams) is always bragging how she was the bridesmaid for Molly Sugden's wedding, to anyone and everyone, while her poor husband Clive (Matt Lucas) tries to hush her. In one episode, Liz starts again bragging about being Molly's bridesmaid. When Molly turns around (we first see only her back) she says to Liz that she only had one bridesmaid and the girl was called Helen, not Liz. Liz ends the skit with throwing a knife into Molly's back.

The character of Liz was inspired by a friend of David Walliams who went to a wedding where he met an older woman who was claiming to have been Molly's bridesmaid.
Was compared with Lucille Ball by John Inman, who stated that both Ball and Sugden were among the very few actresses who were never afraid to do or accept anything for a laugh (such as having a pie thrown in the face or acting downright silly).
Close friend of Björk.
Her speaking role in the San Francisco Opera's 1993 production of Donizetti's "Daughter of the Regiment" was her American stage debut.
After graduation she spent eight years in repertory with a company that also included Eric Sykes and Roy Dotrice.
During World War II, she worked in a munitions factory in Keighley making shells for the Royal Navy.
Her father ran an iron and steel foundry company.
Enjoyed cooking, gardening and driving fast cars.
Upon her death, she was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium and her ashes were scattered in the property's rose garden as per her last wishes.
After living a quiet life in Dorking Surrey Mollie passed away at Royal Surrey Hospital on the 1st July 2009 with her twin sons by her side.
She had two appearances, as different characters, in the UK television series Steptoe and Son (1962), the precursor to the US television series Sanford and Son (1972).
One of five actors to appear in all 69 episodes (plus the 1977 movie) for Are You Being Served? (1972), along with John Inman (Mr. Humphries), Frank Thornton (Captain Peacock), Wendy Richard (Miss Brahms), and Nicholas Smith (Mr. Rumbold). The same five also appeared in the sequel series, Are You Being Served? Again! (1992).

Personal Quotes (3)

[on her Are You Being Served? (1972) character] I've always been very fond of her - she is so vulnerable and silly. But she's got absolutely no sense of humor. That's why the most daring of double meanings in the show are delivered deadpan. I must say, sometimes I've got as far as the dress rehearsal before I've realised the double meanings myself!
[on Harold Bennett and his playing of Young Mr Grace] Harold was a super person. He had a rather naive, innocent quality for all his messing about with the girls. He did it with a sort of childlike quality that somehow wasn't offensive.
[on Mrs Slocombe's "pussy" references] As far as she is concerned she is talking about her cat. The only thing to do is play it absolutely straight. If you don't do it like that it would be very offensive.

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