Doctor Who actress Mary Tamm dies
Tributes have been paid to "truly beautiful" Doctor Who actress Mary Tamm, who died today at the age of 62.
The star was best known for playing the first incarnation of the Doctor's companion Romana, alongside Tom Baker, but recently starred in TV series Wire In The Blood, Paradise Heights and Jonathan Creek. Her last role was in EastEnders, playing Orlenda in 2009.
Tamm, whose parents were Estonian, had a long career on stage and screen, with roles in films including The Odessa File and The Likely Lads, and a recurring role in soap Brookside as Penny Crosbie.
She died at her home in Battersea, south west London after suffering from cancer for 18 months, agent Barry Langford said. The actress, who did not learn English until she went to primary school, leaves her husband, Marcus Ringrose, daughter Lauren and seven-year-old grandson Max.
"Mary was truly beautiful in every way. She was a very spiritual lady who loved nature and adored all animals," her agent said. "On set and offstage, her earthy northern humour and self-deprecating wit brightened every occasion. She was a consummate actress, and immensely popular in the profession.
"Mary was born in Bradford, the daughter of impoverished refugees, and through sheer talent and hard graft got herself to Rada, starred opposite Jon Voight in The Odessa File, and found a form of immortality as the Time Lady Romana opposite Tom Baker in Doctor Who. We will miss her every day."
Actress Helen Lederer, a friend of Tamm's, said: "Mary was such an energised, talented woman with a great twinkle in her eye and she was so very beautiful."
Paul Cornell, who has written Doctor Who novels and screenplays, said on Twitter: "She was always great fun on screen, and those who knew her say that was true off screen too" while fellow Doctor Who writer Joe Lidster said: "Sweet and funny and not at all what you'd expect someone so glamorous to be. Such sad news."
Nicola Bryant, who played Doctor Who's American companion Peri, wrote on Twitter: "Just heard the terrible news that Mary Tamm has died. Completely shocked. Very sad. Thoughts go to Marcus & Lauren. RIP Mary."