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All you need to know about Dawn French's family

The actress is currently starring in ITV's The Trouble with Maggie Cole

dawn french family
Francesca Shillcock
Senior Features Writer
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She's been making us laugh with her fantastic comedy performances for over 30 years in roles for hit shows like French and Saunders and The Vicar of Dibley, and Dawn French is still very much enjoying her acting work. The 62-year-old actress is currently starring in the brand new ITV drama, The Trouble with Maggie Cole, and is also making an appearance in upcoming Poirot film, Death on the Nile. When Dawn isn't busy working, she can be found at her gorgeous Cornwall home with husband Mark Bignell. But who else is in Dawn's family? Here's all you need to know.

dawn french itv

Dawn is currently starring in ITV's The Trouble with Maggie Cole

Who is Dawn French's husband?

In 2013, Dawn married her partner Mark Bignell after a year of dating and the pair have been happily married ever since. The couple swapped vows during an intimate ceremony held in the pretty coastal town of Newquay in Cornwall, where they live now. The couple hired the exclusive Scarlet Hotel to house guests including singer Alison Moyet, filmmaker Richard Curtis and Dawn's comedy partner Jennifer Saunders.

MORE: Inside The Trouble with Maggie Cole star Dawn French's Cornwall home

dawn french and jennifer saunders

The actress is best known for her work alongside fellow comediene Jennifer Saunders

Who else has Dawn French been married to?

Before marrying charity executive Mark in 2013, Dawn was married to comedian Lenny Henry. Dawn met Lenny, 61, on the alternative comedy circuit and the couple wed in a London ceremony in 1984. The couple were married for 25 years before they announced their separation in 2010. Dawn and Lenny stated that their split was amicable, and their divorce was finalised a year later.

MORE: Dawn French marries Mark Bignell in romantic ceremony - a look back on their beautiful day

dawn french

Dawn and Lenny separated in 2010 after 25 years of marriage

Does Dawn French have children?

In 1991, Dawn and Lenny adopted their daughter Billie, following rounds of IVF and miscarriages, and Dawn has stated in the past that her daughter always knew she was adopted. "I knew I wanted to definitely be a mother, that was a very strong instinct," she explained on Fearne Cotton's Happy Place podcast in 2018. "Then what happened was my body wouldn’t let me be a mother and everything kept failing all the time for all sorts of reasons. We had to make a big decision, to put aside IVF and go for adoption."

What else is there to know about Dawn French's family?

Dawn was born in Wales to parents Felicity and Denys and has an older brother, Gary. At the age of 19, Dawn was left heartbroken when her dad, who was an RAF pilot, died in 1977. The actress also opened up about her grief while talking on Fearne's podcast. "Until quite recently, I think I've always thought that I wouldn’t make old bones," she said. "Being 19 and losing your dad made me think 'oh God maybe we don't live very long.'" She continued: "I grasped any opportunity I could, but I was aware that I thought 'I need to get old enough to grow my daughter in to her twenties at least, then she'd manage without me after that.' I was thinking like that - which is ridiculous. It's possibly to do with losing my dad so early...thinking life is a bit fragile and it can be a bit temporary."

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