Fenella Fielding OBE died aged 90 yesterday afternoon on Tuesday 11 September, Fenella’s spokesperson announced: “This follows a severe stroke two weeks ago. During that time, she has been very comfortable and always looked tranquil and divine. And always wearing her eyelashes.”
Born in London to a Lithuanian father and a Romanian mother in 1927, Fenella experienced a difficult upbringing, which was sometimes violent. As a toddler, her parents worried about Fenella’s speech development, until one day they happened upon her enjoying an animated conversation with her doll. “I suppose,” she later recalled, “I just didn’t want to speak to my parents.”
Fenella enjoyed a career that spanned seven decades. Though best known for her two Carry On films, Fenella also appeared in plays by Ibsen, Shakespeare and Euripides. Her acting skills impressed Noel Coward as well as Federico Fellini and she always had a copy of Plato by her bed. However, most will fondly remember her in her most famous role as Valeria, in Carry On Screaming.
Her spokesperson said: “Miss Fielding was an incredible talent. That voice! A unique woman, much loved by family, friends and fans. She will be missed tremendously.”