British actress Dinah Sheridan passed away on Sunday at the age of 92, according to her agent. Sheridan appeared in many classic British films, like The Railway Children and Genevieve.
Sheridan passed away peacefully surrounded by her children at her home in Northwood, Middlesex, reports the BBC.
The was known for playing the mother in The Railway Children and also had roles in the BBC sitcoms Don’t Wait Up and All Night Long, as well as acting in The Mirror Crack’d.
Sheridan was born Dinah Mec in 1920 to a German mother and Russian father. She picked the name Sheridan from a phone book when deciding her stage name.
She gave her reason for the name change as the way her last name was pronounced, “mess.” She explained she didn’t want newspaper critics to have any ammunition against her.
Dinah Sheridan landed her first film role when she was just 15. She put her acting career on hold during World War II, helping out by driving ambulances. She married actor Jimmy Hanley in 1942 and the couple had three children together.
The Daily Mail notes that Dinah’s son, Jeremy, became the Conservative Party chairman in the 1990s, while his sister Jenny was an actress and presenter. She hosted the iTV children’s show Magpie. Another daughter, who was born in 1944, lived for three days.
The couple appeared in movies together, but their marriage came to an end in 1949. Her son Jeremy once said of her role in The Railway Children:
“She practically played herself as the mother in that film, except in real life she has been much more smiling, even though she hasn’t had much to smile about at times.”
She was married four times in all, with her third and fourth husbands passing away before her. Sheridan once said, “I’ve had a very strange life. Whenever I’ve married, I’ve married for life. But things have gone desperately wrong.”
Dinah Sheridan’s films The Railway Children and Genevieve were named on a list of the top 100 British films of all time in 1999. They were voted on by a panel of over 1,000 actors, producers, writers, and directors.
Check out the video below to watch Dinah Sheridan in Genevieve.