Vera star Brenda Blethyn makes rare comment on first marriage

The actress re-married in 2010

Francesca Shillcock

Brenda Blethyn has opened up about the breakdown of her first marriage. The actress, who is known and loved for her many roles - most notably as eccentric detective Vera Stanhope for the ITV show, married her first husband Alan Blethyn in 1964. However, the relationship was not meant to be and the couple divorced nine years later.

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In an interview with The Scotsman back in 2019, the Secrets & Lies star explained that her busy schedule as a rising actress, got in the way of their marriage. "He met somebody else," she said plainly.


Brenda is known as loved as Vera Stanhope

"But she was nice, too." Despite the split, Brenda kept her married name for her professional work. Soon after, Brenda began a relationship with art director Michael Mayhew and the two have been happily together since and even tied the knot in 2012 after a 35 year engagement.

The actress also revealed how she responded to being asked to play the eccentric detective. Speaking about her dowdy character, she said: "I read the script and thought why have they picked ME?" Before going on to admit that she warmed the on-screen persona.

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Brenda married her second husband in 2012

"I think audiences like her because she's not a threat to anybody. She's not reliant on lipstick, she's not a fashion guru, she doesn't ask you to like her. Take her or leave her, and if you leave her that’s OK. In fact I don't think audiences did like her to start with.

"And because her team like and respect her, I think the public started to think, well, there must be something going for her. She's grown on them."

On the announcement of the upcoming new series, the leading star expressed her excitement and also gave insight into how production would take place in light of the coronavirus pandemic. "I'm really looking forward to working on the next series of Vera," she said in a statement.

"The safety of all personnel is always at the forefront of production, and with all the extra COVID precautions in place we will relish creating and delivering six cracking new episodes."

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