Pauline McLynn

Last updated

Pauline McLynn
Born (1962-07-11) 11 July 1962 (age 56)
Sligo, County Sligo, Ireland
OccupationActress, author
Years active1988–present
Richard Cook(m. 1997)
Website Official website

Pauline McLynn (born 11 July 1962) is an Irish character actress and author. She is best known for her roles as Mrs Doyle in the Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted , Libby Croker in the Channel 4 comedy drama Shameless , and Yvonne Cotton in the BBC soap opera EastEnders . McLynn also appeared as a Garda in Sky One's Trollied .

Channel 4 British free-to-air television channel

Channel 4 is a British public-service free-to-air television network that began transmission on 2 November 1982. Although largely commercially-self-funded, it is ultimately publicly-owned; originally a subsidiary of the Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA), the station is now owned and operated by Channel Four Television Corporation, a public corporation of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, which was established in 1990 and came into operation in 1993. With the conversion of the Wenvoe transmitter group in Wales to digital terrestrial broadcasting on 31 March 2010, Channel 4 became a UK-wide TV channel for the first time.

<i>Father Ted</i> television series

Father Ted is a British-made sitcom that was produced by Hat Trick Productions for Channel 4. Written by Irish writers Arthur Mathews and Graham Linehan, and starring a predominantly Irish cast, it originally aired over three series from 21 April 1995 until 1 May 1998, including a Christmas special, for a total of 25 episodes. The show aired on RTÉ Two in Ireland, and in Australia on Nine Network and ABC Television.

<i>Shameless</i> (UK TV series) British comedy-drama series (2004-2013)

Shameless is a British black comedy series set in Manchester on the fictional Chatsworth council estate. Produced by Company Pictures for Channel 4, the series aired from 13 January 2004 to 28 May 2013. The comedy drama, centred on British working class culture, was accorded critical acclaim by various sections of the British media, including The Sun newspaper and Newsnight Review on BBC Two. The programme was created and partially written by Paul Abbott, who is also the programme's executive producer. In 2005, the show won "Best Drama Series" at the BAFTA TV Awards and "Best TV Comedy Drama" at the British Comedy Awards. The network Showtime adapted the series into its own American version, which debuted in 2011.


McLynn is involved with many charities against the racing and export of greyhounds. She is a patron of Birmingham Greyhound Protection.

Early life

McLynn was born in Sligo, and grew up in Galway. [1] She studied History of Art and Modern English at Trinity College, Dublin, but was more heavily involved in the college's drama society. [2] She graduated with an MA. [1]

Sligo Town in Connacht, Ireland

Sligo is a coastal seaport and the county town of County Sligo, Ireland, within the western province of Connacht. With a population of approximately 20,000 in 2016, it is the second largest urban centre in the West of Ireland, with only Galway being larger. The Sligo Borough District constitutes 61% (38,581) of the county's population of 63,000.

Galway City in Connacht, Ireland

Galway is a city in the West of Ireland, in the province of Connacht.

Acting career

Although McLynn was in her early thirties when playing Mrs Doyle, makeup was used to make her look far older to fit the character's profile. She received a British Comedy Award for her performances in 1996. The award was presented to her by Tony Blair.

Tony Blair Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

Anthony Charles Lynton Blair is a British politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997 to 2007 and Leader of the Labour Party from 1994 to 2007. He was Leader of the Opposition from 1994 to 1997. As of 2017, Blair is the last British Labour Party leader to have won a general election.

Other televised appearances have been in sketches on Bremner, Bird and Fortune , and numerous panel shows, including Just a Minute , Have I Got News for You , and If I Ruled the World . In 1999, she appeared in the film adaptation of Angela's Ashes . She has also appeared in Jennifer Saunders' Jam & Jerusalem . Between 2001 and 2003 she was recruited to play Mrs Doyle for a UK advert for online tax return filing by the Inland Revenue. [3]

<i>Bremner, Bird and Fortune</i> television series

Bremner, Bird and Fortune was a satirical British television programme produced by Vera Productions for Channel Four, uniting the longstanding satirical team of John Bird and John Fortune with the satirical impressionist Rory Bremner. It had 16 series, followed by several one-off episodes. Fortune died in December 2013, three and a half years after the last episode was broadcast.

Just a Minute is a BBC Radio 4 radio comedy and television panel game chaired by Nicholas Parsons. Its first transmission on Radio 4 was on 22 December 1967, three months after the station's launch. The Radio 4 programme won a Gold Sony Radio Academy Award in 2003.

<i>Have I Got News for You</i> British television panel show

Have I Got News for You (HIGNFY) is a British television panel show produced by Hat Trick Productions for the BBC. Regularly broadcast since 1990, it is loosely based on the BBC Radio 4 show The News Quiz and has a topical and satirical remit.

McLynn was critically acclaimed for her performance in the 2005 film Gypo , receiving an Irish Film and Television Award nomination for Best Actress. [4]

Gypo is a 2005 independent film written and directed by Jan Dunn. Its story details the breakdown of a family in a small town in Britain, told in three narratives.

McLynn appeared in Shameless , which was produced by the British broadcaster Channel 4, as Libby Croker. In January 2011 it was announced that she had left the show, reportedly after a "difficult year". [5] McLynn also played the role of Alice's mother in the Comedy Central show Threesome. Starred in Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield in 2011.

Threesome is a British television sitcom written by Tom MacRae and starring Stephen Wight, Amy Huberman and Emun Elliott. The series is focused around three friends—Alice, Mitch and Richie—who return home from a night out celebrating Alice's birthday and end up having a threesome, which results in Alice getting pregnant. Instead of getting an abortion, the three friends decide to raise the baby as a trio. The series began airing on 17 October 2011 on Comedy Central and Comedy Central HD. It is the first original scripted comedy commissioned by Comedy Central and is produced by Big Talk Productions.

McLynn played Mary Whyte in the BBC's 2013 sitcom Father Figure . [6]

In 2014 McLynn played the part of Evelyn in "Kiss for the Camera", a series three episode of the BBC comedy Pramface.

On 12 May 2014, McLynn joined the cast of EastEnders as Yvonne Cotton, the mother of Charlie Cotton (Declan Bennett) and ex-daughter-in-law of Dot Branning (June Brown). [7] After starting as a recurring character, McLynn quickly became a regular when her character's storylines escalated. She made her final appearance on 13 January 2015, at the end of her contract. However, McLynn returned to the soap opera on 14 May 2015 for one single episode to give evidence against Dot during Nick Cotton's (John Altman) murder trial.

In 2017 McLynn appeared as the mother of lead character Marcella in Roisin Conaty's E4 comedy GameFace , and in April 2018 she portrayed Sister Mary in the BBC Two biopic Dave Allen At Peace.

She appears as a minor character named Mrs. Trattner in the 2018 film Johnny English Strikes Again . [8]

Personal life

McLynn is married to theatrical agent Richard Cook. [9] She is a patron of the children's charity World Vision Ireland and is president of Friends of Innisfree Housing Association. [10] [11] She is also a patron for Littlehill Animal Rescue, Sanctuary in Ireland and Birmingham Greyhound Protection.

McLynn is a fan of the Championship football team Aston Villa. [12] She says her best moment supporting Villa came in 1996 when she watched them beat Leeds United in the Football League Cup final with her Father Ted co-star Ardal O'Hanlon, who is a Leeds supporter.

Awards and nominations

1996 British Comedy Award Top TV Comedy Actress Father Ted Won [13]
2006Torino International Gay & Lesbian Film FestivalSpecial Mention: Best Video Gypo Won [14]
2007 Irish Film and Television Award Best Actress in a Lead Role in a Feature Film Gypo Nominated

Related Research Articles

Ardal O'Hanlon is an Irish comedian and actor. He played Father Dougal McGuire in Father Ted, George Sunday/Thermoman in My Hero, and DI Jack Mooney in Death in Paradise.

Prunella Scales British actress

Prunella Margaret Scales, is an English actress best known for her role as Basil Fawlty's wife Sybil in the BBC comedy Fawlty Towers and her BAFTA award-nominated role as Queen Elizabeth II in A Question of Attribution by Alan Bennett.

Dermot Morgan Irish actor

Dermot John Morgan was an Irish comedian, actor and previously a schoolteacher, who achieved international recognition for his role as Father Ted Crilly in the Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted.

Caroline Quentin British actress

Caroline Quentin is an English actress. Quentin became known for her television appearances: portraying Dorothy in Men Behaving Badly (1992–1998), Maddie Magellan in Jonathan Creek (1997–2000), and DCI Janine Lewis in Blue Murder (2003–2009).

Rebecca Louise Front is an English actress, writer and comedian. She won the 2010 BAFTA TV Award for Best Female Comedy Performance for The Thick of It (2009–12). She is also known for her work in numerous other British comedies, including the radio show On The Hour (1992), The Day Today (1994), Knowing Me, Knowing You… with Alan Partridge (1994), Time Gentlemen Please (2000–02), sketch show Big Train (2002), and Nighty Night (2004–05).

Pauline Collins British actress

Pauline Collins is an English actress of stage, television, and film, who first came to prominence portraying Sarah Moffat in Upstairs, Downstairs (1971–73) and its spin-off, Thomas & Sarah (1979). In 1992, she released her autobiography, titled Letter to Louise.

Alex Borstein American actress and comedian

Alexandrea Borstein is an American actress, writer, producer, and comedian. She is known for voicing Lois Griffin on the animated comedy series Family Guy (1999–present).

Frank Kelly Irish actor

Francis Kelly, was an Irish actor, singer and writer, whose career covered television, radio, theatre, music, screenwriting and film. He played Father Jack Hackett in the Channel Four sitcom Father Ted, and was also the son of the cartoonist Charles E. Kelly.

Dot Cotton Fictional character from the British soap opera EastEnders

Dorothy "Dot" Branning is a fictional character from the BBC soap opera, EastEnders, played by June Brown since 1985. Dot first appeared in EastEnders in July 1985 as the mother of criminal Nick Cotton. The character has worked as a launderette assistant for most of that time, along with original character Pauline Fowler. Dot moved away with her son and his family in 1993. In reality, Brown left the show in 1993, unhappy with the axing of her co-star Peter Dean, who played Pete Beale from the show's first episode to early 1993. Brown returned to the role in April 1997, and on 28 April 2017, Dot overtook Pat Butcher as the second-longest-serving character in EastEnders, surpassed only by original character Ian Beale. In a special episode entitled EastEnders: Dot's Story (2003) a young Dot was played by Tallulah Pitt-Brown in flashbacks. In April 2012, Brown took a six-month break from the show to write her memoirs. Dot temporarily departed on 18 May 2012. She returned on 14 January 2013. In February 2015, Dot began appearing less frequently due to Brown gradually losing her eyesight; this aspect of her life was later written into her character the following year. In January 2016, it was announced that Brown had renewed her contract with the BBC until March 2017. In January 2017 it was reported that the BBC were offering Brown £300,000 for a one-year contract. In April 2018 it was announced that Brown had renewed her contract again until 2019. Brown will be returning to the show in October 2018, after a break due to her health, alongside Harold Legg. Dot returned in the episode broadcast on 15 October 2018; she departed again temporarily on 1 March 2019.

Rebecca Ryan is an English actress. Ryan is known for portaying the roles of Debbie Gallagher in Channel 4 comedy drama series Shameless, Vicki MacDonald in BBC school drama Waterloo Road and Gemma Dean in BBC medical drama Casualty.

Maria Doyle Kennedy Irish actress and singer

Maria Doyle Kennedy is an Irish singer, songwriter, and actress. With a singing and acting career that has spanned nearly 30 years, she has established herself as one of Ireland's most prolific artists and entertainers. As an actress, she is best known for her extensive television roles as Patsy on Father Ted (1998), Catherine of Aragon on The Tudors (2007–2010), Vera Bates on Downton Abbey (2011), and Siobhán Sadler on Orphan Black (2013–2017). As a musician, she is well known for her world-wide hit folk albums Mütter and Sing. Her new self-titled album was released in 2017.

Angeline Ball is an Irish actress who resides in London, England. She is a trained dancer in ballet, tap and modern dance. Her breakthrough role came in 1991 when she starred as backing singer Imelda Quirke in Alan Parker's The Commitments. Since then she has appeared in various films and television series both in Ireland and in America. Most notably, she played Vada's mother in My Girl 2 for which she sang a rendition of Charlie Chaplin's "Smile". She worked with Alan Parker again when she sang backing vocals for the Evita soundtrack album. Ian La Frenais and Dick Clement wrote the short-lived 1993 TV series Over the Rainbow for her. She also wrote all the music for Over the Rainbow.

"And God Created Woman" is the 5th episode of the Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted. It is named after the 1956 film And God Created Woman.

"Flight Into Terror" is the 10th episode of the second series of Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted and the 16th episode overall.

Katherine Harmonica Joy "Mimi" Tutton is a fictional character from the British Channel 4 comedy drama, Shameless. Mimi is the foul-mouthed, loud, brash and violent matriarch of the Maguire family. She is also a drug dealer on the Chatsworth Estate and is frequently seen selling drugs on the show. She is extremely violent and easily angered. She has "headbutted" several characters on the show including Lip Gallagher, Sue Garland, Cassie Western and even her own son, Shane. Mimi is as hard as nails, and she can hold her own with men and women; at one point during series 3 a whole riot squad is needed to restrain her after she attempts to free her daughter from incarceration at the police station. Mimi appeared in 111 episodes in total.

Declan Bennett is an English singer-songwriter and actor. During his musical career from 2001 to 2006 he appeared under the name Sumladfromcov, now performing under his own name. As a teenager he was a member of pop/rock band Point Break, and he has performed lead roles in shows in London's West End, including the lead role, Guy, in the UK premier of Tony-winning Broadway musical Once at the Phoenix Theatre in London. In early 2014, Bennett joined EastEnders as Charlie Cotton, the secret grandson of long-serving character Dot Branning He was axed in 2015 and departed on 24 September but returned on 5 May 2017 for one month. In October 2016, Bennett took on the role as Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar at the Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park. He reprised the role for the 2017 season.


  1. 1 2 "Biography". Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  2. Aine O'Connor "Interview: Unexpectedly novel", The Sunday Times, 11 December 2005
  3. Allen, Richard (3 January 2002). "Mrs Doyle in 'most annoying ad'". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  4. "Pauline McLynn – Awards & Nominations". IMDb. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  5. Ian Wylie "Shameless star Pauline McLynn quits show after 'difficult year'", Manchester Evening News, 23 January 2011
  6. "Father Figure: interviews with Jason Byrne and Pauline McLynn" . Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  7. "EastEnders: Father Ted star Pauline Mclynn joins show as Yvonne Cotton". Digital Spy. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  8. Johnny English Strikes Again. British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 12 January 2019.
  9. Kellaway, Kate (8 May 2011). "Pauline McLynn: 'For Winnie the rule is: I talk therefore I am' – interview". The Guardian.
  10. Gray, Jim (29 August 2011). "How Pauline's life was 'turned upside down' by her trip to Tanzanian town". The Sligo Champion. Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  11. "Friends of Innisfree". Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  12. "Aston Villa Famous Fans - Pauline McLynn". Archived from the original on 18 April 2015. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  13. "Past Winners 1996". Retrieved 9 May 2011.
  14. Shared with Chloe Sirene, Paul McGann, Rula Lenska, Freddie Connor, Olegar Fedoro, Tamzin Dunstone, Barry Latchford, Tom Stuart