Incredible to think that Lalla Ward played the second reincarnation of Time Lady Romanadvoratrelundar (Romana for short) in a mere 11 Doctor Who stories – stretching from Destiny of the Daleks (Sept ’79) to the wonderful Stephen Gallagher’s wacky finale Warrior’s Gate (Jan ’81).
Man. I guess Time really did just move a helluva lot more slowly back then.
Unusually, Lalla appeared as another character in a previous episode in the Whoniverse before playing Romana.
Princess Astra in The Armageddon Factor, if you must know.
On this, the birthday of surely the good Doctor’s most elegant and intelligent companion, here are a few more unusual facts about possibly my favourite Intergalactic Space Babe of them all:
- Lalla is the daughter of Edward Ward, 7th Viscount Bangor, who was the BBC’s first foreign correspondent.
- Lalla was introduced to future husband, evolutionary biologist and author Richard Dawkins by Douglas Adams at his 40th birthday party on 14th March 1992.
- They married in September of the same year.
- While playing Ophelia in a BBC production of Hamlet, Lalla was famously told by Patrick Stewart: ‘Why d’you do so much television? And of ALL things why science fiction?’
- Lalla takes takes great pleasure in reminding Patrick of this every time they meet.
- Though best known as an actress, Lalla is an accomplished artist.
- Lalla has also published several books on sewing and embroidery.
- Lalla calls her embroidery: ‘painting with a sowing machine.’
- Lalla is besotted with lemurs.
Would you like to know more?
Then check out this audio interview from BBC Radio 4’s ‘Midweek’ (27 Jan 2010).