Actress Haydn Gwynne has died aged 66 following a recent cancer diagnosis.
Her representatives confirmed the news Friday with a statement handed to multiple news outlets. The statement said Gwynne died in hospital “in the small hours of Friday, October 20, surrounded by her beloved sons, close family, and friends.”
“We would like to thank the staff and teams at the Royal Marsden and Brompton hospitals for their wonderful care over the last few weeks,” the statement added.
Born in Sussex, England, Gwynne studied Modern Languages at the University of Warwick before taking a five-year lectureship in Italy, where she taught English. She became an actress in her mid-twenties and first came to notice on television as starring in the David Lodge campus comedy/drama Nice Work (1989) before joining the comedy series Drop the Dead Donkey (1990), for which she earned a BAFTA TV nomination in 1992.
Some of her other small screen credits included Peak Practice, Merseybeat, and the HBO/BBC historical series Rome. Gwynne also briefly portrayed former royal aide Lady Susan Hussey, who resigned from the royal household following a racism row, in the fifth series of Netflix’s The Crown.
Alongside her work on the small screen, Gwynne had a celebrated career on stage, receiving four Olivier Award nominations for her performance in the West End productions of City Of Angels, Billy Elliot The Musical, The Threepenny Opera, and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. She was also nominated for the Best Performance for a Featured Actress in a Musical Tony Award for Billy Elliot in 2009.
Gwynne’s other prominent West End roles included Margaret Thatcher in The Crown creator Peter Morgan’s 2013 production The Audience. She starred alongside Helen Mirren in the play. Gwynne had been set to appear in a new London production of Stephen Sondheim’s Old Friends, but withdrew in early September. A statement at the time sighted “sudden personal circumstances.”
Paying tribute to Gwynne on social media, the writer Jack Throne said: “Haydn was the kindest, loveliest soul and a wonderful performer. She gave everything to everything.”