Olivia Colman: from Norfolk to the Oscars

Olivia Colman won an Oscar (photo: 63465486@N07, Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

Olivia Colman won an Oscar (photo: 63465486@N07, Flickr, CC BY 2.0) - Credit: Archant

She rubs elbows with Hollywood’s big players, has a pile of awards for her acting parts and has now scooped her first Oscar - but the ever-humble Olivia Colman stays true to her Norfolk roots

Since her acclaimed role in ITV drama Broadchurch, Norfolk-born actress Olivia Colman has become one of Britain’s biggest stars. From gritty dramas to iconic comedies, she has enjoyed huge critical success - winning a host of awards from BAFTAs to Golden Globes and now, an Oscar for her role in 2018’s The Favourite.

But despite her hectic schedule, she still finds time to return to Norfolk. Growing up, she lived all over the county but it is north Norfolk which she describes as her “stomping ground” and “spiritual home”. She was attended Norwich High School for Girls and Gresham’s School in Holt.

Olivia, whose first job was at The King’s Arms in Blakeney, talks wistfully about the idyllic childhood she enjoyed – revising for her A-Levels on Holkham beach or just being able to open the back door and go off the whole day.

“My favourite childhood memory was going crabbing with my family,” she says. “We used to sit on a muddy bridge with a string and a bit of bacon and catch crabs, then do a crab race at the end. It was important just because nobody was working, we were all mucking about, we all got on and we had fun.”

Olivia is also known for her charity work with organisations including ActionAid, Unicef, London-based domestic violence charity Tender and more. In September 2013, she took part in the Alzheimer’s Society’s Memory Walk at Holkham Hall.

See Olivia’s teary acceptance speech:

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