Wednesday, 30 December 2009
An extract from Sue Lloyd's autobiography:
The first time I was offered a role in Crossroads, I must admit my initial reaction was to be a bit sniffy about it. The soap was renowned for its wobbly scenery, bizarre story lines and regular slaughtering by the critics. Why would I, just back from filming The Pink Panther with Peter Sellers in the South of France, and about to embark on the comedy The Upchat Line with John Alderton, want to get involved in a project like that? Besides, I was too busy.
'If they want you,' advised my agent, 'they'll come back.'
He was right. About a year later they called again. They were looking for an actress to play a slightly mysterious, classy lady named Barbara Brady. She was to arrive at the Crossroads Motel, apparently to take a post as a sort of upmarket housekeeper, but in reality she was an author researching material for a new book.
Barbara arrived in 1979, a stranger to the area and to the motel staff. It was at first thought that she was out to poison Lloyd Munro, her employer (Barbara worked as his housekeeper) but later transpired that she was an eccentric novelist, doing research.
Barbara soon attracted the attention of Crossroads Motel director David Hunter and Dr John Farnham, from the group practice in King's Oak. In 1980, Barbara and David became engaged - and David was shot in the motel office by his deranged ex-wife Rosemary on the same night!
Fortunately, he survived, the couple married later in 1980, and became one of Crossroads most popular ingredients until they were written out in 1985. Barbara developed from the eccentric novelist of 1979 to the caring wife, motel executive and Crossroads favourite of the early-to-mid 1980s. The character was possessed of a keen social conscience and memorably befriended a tramp on one occasion whilst researching a novel.
In reality, Sue Lloyd and Ronald Allen fell in love and were together until Mr Allen's death in the early 1990s.