Sherrie’s 60 glorious years
As she leaves
Loose Women, Sherrie Hewson joins TV Times News to look back on her six decades in showbiz
Sherrie Hewson takes a sip of bubbly and gaily tips it over a tower of champagne glasses during our exclusive TV Times
The Benidorm and former Coronation Street star is regaling us with tales of her colourful career as we celebrate her 60th year in showbusiness and prepare to bid her an emotional farewell this week on Loose Women.
After 13 years on the ITV panel show, she’s moving to pastures new, but she’s excited rather than sad.
‘I think how amazing it is at my age that I still have all the work I do,’ enthuses Sherrie, 65.
Here, she looks back at her amazing
They’re going to dedicate the show to me, which is wonderful, but they’ve got something planned that they won’t tell me about. I’m sure we’ll cry all through it, especially if Coleen Nolan’s there. But I hope it’s a celebration. I’ll still be around and I’m off to do more acting work, which is what I wanted. Who will you miss most? Coleen is a massive friend and always there for you but I’ll miss them all; there’s a camaraderie to Loose Women. Whenever one of us is down, the others bring us up. We really care about each other.
You started in showbiz when you were only five years old – what was that like?
I’ve never known a proper job, only sequins and tulle! At five I was touring the country in three revue shows a week, doing singing, tap-dancing and ballet. My mother, Joy, was like Gypsy Rose Lee’s [pushy showbiz] mother, saying, ‘Sing out, Sherrie!’ I don’t remember if I enjoyed it, but I didn’t know any other way of living.
Who have been your favourite co-stars?
Bob Hoskins, my co-star in [BBC mini-series] Flickers (1980), was wonderful and taught me so much about camera technique. Richard Chamberlain and I became close on The Slipper and the Rose (1976). He was the sweetest man but very silly. He’d lock me in a cupboard and make me late on set.
Then I was gobsmacked when Harrison Ford asked me to lunch when we worked on Hanover Street (1979), but when I got to the restaurant there were 15 other women there! I also adored Margaret Lockwood, who played my mother in Slipper, and Joan Collins, who I work with on Benidorm, always looks fabulous 24/7, but she’s also very funny and doesn’t take herself seriously.
Iõve never known a proper job, only sequins
Did you enjoy playing Mrs Slocombe in the recent revival of Are You Being Served? Mollie Sugden, who originally played her, was loved by the whole country, so we were apprehensive. But the night we filmed it, the feeling in the studio was so positive that when the music started I burst into tears. I said to Jason Watkins, who played Mr Humphries, ‘Whatever happens to us, we’ll never forget this night’. We’d love to do some more episodes. What career dreams do you still harbour?
I’d like to do a drama with a bit of grit to it. I love Benidorm and adore Are You Being Served?, and now I’d really like a role in something like Call the Midwife – then it would be the hat-trick! What’s on the horizon for you? My daughter, Keeley, is getting married in October, which I’m so excited about. I’m doing a panto [Aladdin] in Manchester with John Thomson and then I go to Benidorm for five months to play Joyce Temple-savage again. I feel so lucky to still be working as an actress. If my mother could see me now, she’d be so proud and say, ‘Thank your lucky stars, Sherrie’. And she’d be right.
Sherrie’s reached another milestone but it’s far from the end of the road
Photographed for TV Times by Nicky Johnston
Sherrie, what’s the plan for your final episode of Loose Women on Monday?
The young starlet in a publicity shoot from 1975
The bubbly star celebrates with some well-earned champagne
In the pink: As Mrs Slocombe in with Niky Wardley as Miss Brahms
Role model: She learned a lot from Bob Hoskins in