Linda Bassett: Call the Midwife, her career and husband

Known for her role as Nurse Phyllis Crane in Call the Midwife, Linda has been on our screens and the stage since the 1980s.

Linda Bassett

by Ellen Kinsey |

Linda Bassett is an English actress largely known for her work in the theatre and in the BBC hit TV show Call the Midwife. Her stern and big-hearted character Nurse Phyllis Crane is much loved by fans of the show.

Here is everything you need to know about Linda from where she is from, how her career began and where she is now.

Where is Linda Bassett from?

Linda was born February 4, 1950, in Pluckley, Kent. Brought up in Pimlico, London, Linda became interested in acting at a young age from attending theatre shows. When leaving school Linda started working at the Old Vic, the famous classical theatre house as an usher before studying English at the University of Leeds.

After a year of university, Linda dropped out and started to get involved with community drama groups. She made her stage debut at age 32 in 1982 and nine years later joined the Royal Shakespeare Company. Since then, she has appeared in many West End plays including Alan Bennett’s People and Escaped Alone by Caryl Churchill. She was also involved in many television series such as The Bill in 1984 and Boon and Causality in 1986.

Linda Bassett movies and TV shows

What TV programmes has Linda Bassett been in?

As well as Call the Midwife, Linda has also appeared in series such as Heartbeat in 1992, Midsomer Murders in 1997, Dinner Ladies in 1998 and Lark Rise to Candleford (2008).


Who is Linda Bassett in Call the Midwife?

Linda plays Nurse Phyllis Crane in the popular BBC show and has previously admitted she is "baffled" as to why fans love her character so much. She plays an older district nurse and midwife, who arrived in series four as temporary cover for sister Evangelina whilst she is on sick leave. However, she still remains one of the core characters of Nonnatus House.

Nurse Phyllis Crane is a no-nonsense woman and Linda wonders why Nurse Crane has become such a hit on the show.

In a previous interview, she opened up and talked about fans who recognise her and tell her how much they love her character. "You can only react to that kind of thing with warmth, she smiled.

Is Linda Bassett leaving Call the Midwife?

Currently, there has been no confirmation that Linda will be leaving the show so we look forward to seeing her as Nurse Crane in season 12!

Nurse Crane

Linda Bassett in Twirlywoos

Did you know Linda was the narrator of children's TV show Twirlywoos from 2015-2017? The Twirlywoos are four fruit tea-loving, birdlike characters who seek adventure and fun wherever they go. Whether in the real world or on their boat, they love to hide, imitate and be surprised as they discover new things.

What films has Linda Bassett been in?

Linda made her screen debut in 1987 when she played the character, Gertrude Stein, in American Playhouse and Janet Swanton in Paris by Night (1988).

She is best known for her role as Ella Khan in East is East (1999). A comedy-drama about George Khan, a Pakistani who is married to Ella Khan, a quintessential British woman and his constant battle to instil traditional Pakistani Muslim values in his six children.

Linda also played the role in the original stage production and after this success, became a familiar face on British television.

Another notable mention is Linda's role as Cora alongside Helen Mirren and Julie Walters in Calendar Girls (2003), a film about a Women's Institute chapter's fundraising effort for a local hospital by posing nude for a calendar which becomes a media sensation.

Since then, Linda has appeared in many hit films such as From Sense & Sensibility and Twirlywoos, Kinky Boots (2005) and The Hours (2002).

Linda Bassett calendar girls

In an interview, Linda Bassett and Nikki Amuka-Bird discuss the Royal Court Theatre at 60 years old.

Linda says, “I love it, that’s my relationship with Court. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be doing this interview, as I don’t like doing interviews. But I couldn’t resist doing it for the Court.”

Who is Linda Bassett's husband?

Linda was married to journalist Julian Foster for over a decade before it is believed the couple divorced. Not much is known about Linda's former husband.

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