One of our favourite travel show presenters, Dame Joanna Lumley is back on screens with a brand new series, Joanna Lumley’s Great Cities of the World, which sees the much-loved actress explore the history and cultures of Berlin, Paris and Rome.
While Joanna became a household name thanks to Absolutely Fabulous, she has been a regular on screens for half a century. But how much do you know about her life away from cameras? Keep reading to find out…
WATCH: Did you enjoy Joanna’s performance in ITV’s Finding Alice?
Joanna Lumley’s husband
Joanna, 74, is married to conductor Stephen Barlow. The two wed in 1986, and after 30 years of marriage, they’re still going strong. While the pair reportedly knew each other growing up, it wasn’t until Joanna was 31 that she and Stephen hit it off while attending a mutual friend’s wedding.
Recalling their first encounter, Stephen said: “Jo looked amazing in a turquoise coat. I’d never seen anything so glamorous and statuesque,” while Joanna herself said of the meeting: “I felt like I’d had a kind of electric shock; it wasn’t a matter of falling instantly in love, it was the impact of a colossal shock, completely memorable.”
Joanna and husband Stephen have been together for over 30 years
Last year Joanna opened up about how her extensive travels affect her relationship with her husband. “We are both independent. I love being on my own. When I’m away, I don’t even phone home,” she revealed during an appearance on The Jonathan Ross Show.
“Incidentally I come from a different generation where we couldn’t usually afford to phone home, so I’ve never been used to it. I like to write a postcard. I won’t phone, that takes your travelling head away from you… You don’t want people to keep phoning. If you’re on the other side of the world it’s always the wrong time.”
Joanna was briefly married to ‘Allo ‘Allo! creator Jeremy Lloyd
Before meeting Stephen, Joanna was briefly married to ‘Allo ‘Allo! creator Jeremy Lloyd during the 1970s, but their marriage was dissolved with a no-fault divorce after just a few months.
Joanna Lumley’s children
Joanna is both a mother and a grandma! At 21, she gave birth to her only child, a son named Jamie Lumley. Joanna has a very close relationship with Jamie, who she raised as a single mother after she split from his father, the photographer Michael Claydon.
Joanna had her son Jamie at 21
Now 53, Jamie has two teenage daughters of his own, Alice and Emily who Joanna dotes on. Speaking to Northern Echo back in 2018, Joanna described it as “absolute heaven” when her beloved granddaughters come to stay with her.
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