Dawn French: Getting older is not for wusses


Dawn French says she is happy getting older despite “things going a bit wrong”.

The actress, 63, will be back on screen as the vicar of Dibley, 26 years after she first donned the dog collar.

She told Radio Times Christmas issue: “It’s a privilege to get older.”

But she added: “It’s not for wusses. Things go a bit wrong…

Dawn French
Dawn French

“Your rheumatoid arthritis knee stops you walking your dog a long way every morning, you know you’ve got to have a little op on that at some point, and you’ve got to take six weeks off…

“But ultimately, it ain’t so bad. Your teeth are a bit yellower, your chin has sagged, you’re fatter, you’re greyer.

“The only thing is, I feel the tick tock a little bit. I am quicker to edit out eejits from my life, because I haven’t got the hours.

“That’s the only grumpy part of me, it’s just to do with time,” she told the magazine.

French will return as the parish of Dibley’s Geraldine Granger in TV specials, the Vicar Of Dibley In Lockdown, on BBC One.

Her late co-star Emma Chambers, who portrayed Alice Tinker in the hit sitcom, died of natural causes, aged 53, in 2018.

“Of course, as Geraldine is talking about Alice, I’m talking about Emma, so it wasn’t easy. It was very emotional,” French said of filming the show.

Radio Times
Radio Times

The star also spoke about her Christmas plans, saying “there are probably a lot of people, and I might be one of them, who don’t mind not being in a great big gang”.

She added: “Does it matter if we don’t have that Christmas?

“What about if we didn’t even have presents and gave money to the right places instead?”

She also revealed she has a pre-Zoom ritual.

“I always use my hand sanitiser and I always spray a little bit of perfume too,” French said.

The full interview is in Radio Times Christmas issue.