Kate O'Mara, glamorous British actress best known for her roles as Joan Collins' scheming sister in Dynasty, Rani in Doctor Who, and Joanna Lumley's evil sister Jackie in Absolutely Fabulous, has died after a short illness in a Sussex nursing home. She was 74.
Born Frances Carroll in 1939, O'Mara became first became known as the heroine of two Hammer horror films during the early 1970s. Hammer offered her a contract, but she turned it down, opting instead to pursue a career in television. Over 30 years she appeared in roles in some of the top-rating shows in Britain and the US, including Doctor Who, Z-Cars, The Saint, The Avengers, The Brothers, Triangle and Cluedo.
It is her roles as the evil sisters of Joan Collins in Dynasty, and Joanna Lumley in Absolutely Fabulous for which she is best-remembered to modern audiences. Joan Collins has expressed her sadness at the passing of her co-star. The television duo last saw each other in 2012 when along with Dame Shirley Bassey, they were photographed together chatting animatedly with the Queen.
Always known for her age-defying looks, O'Mara appeared to be embracing her 70s when last year she was photographed with a shock of white hair. She had suffered from severe depression following the suicide of her son, who unable to work following an accident, hung himself in his mother's garage in 2012.
August 10, 1939 - March 20, 2014