Whilst the nation is gripped to the current ITV drama, Mrs Biggs, which tells the story of the long-suffering wife of Great Train robber, Ronnie Biggs, not many of us feel much sympathy towards her husband.
Ronnie and Charmian Biggs married when Charmian was only 17, and pregnant. Before meeting Biggs she had lead a respectable crime-less life, living with her strict parents. After meeting Ron, she ended up in with a criminal record and lost the respect, and all contact with her parents after she ran away to marry him.
The pair then led a relatively simple life together, having two young boys, and were generally happy, until Ronnie got involved in the Great Train Robbery and ended up being sent to prison for 30 years.
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If you are anything like us, you will be hooked to the current ITV1 drama, Mrs Biggs – the, till now, untold story of Charmian Biggs, the wife of the great train robber, Ronnie.
Mrs Biggs tells the story of the infamous train robbers life, born to upper-class parents, and banished from their lives after marrying Biggs, and the real Mrs Biggs, Charmian Brent, will appear in the drama.
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In ITV1’s latest drama to be inspired by true events Mrs Biggs, Sheridan Smith takes the lead role as Charmian Brent the woman who aged only eighteen married the notorious criminal Ronnie Biggs. Having just watched some of the scenes from the series for the first time, including the one in which Ronnie and Charmian’s eldest son Nicholas dies in a car accident, both Smith and Brent are teary-eyed but according to the actress she had been crying ever since she first read the script. Smith freely admits that before she became involved with the project she, like many people from the younger generation, only knew bits and bobs about Ronnie Biggs who she feels had been painted as the mastermind behind The Great Train Robbery.
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Former Gavin & Stacey star Sheridan Smith is of course headed back to our screens playing the role of Charmian Biggs in ITV’s drama, Mrs Biggs, which of course tells the real life story of Charmian’s relationship with Great Train robber, Ronnie Biggs.
And in an interview with What’s On TV, Sheridan has revealed that she hopes she’s done Charmian and her often tragic story, “justice.”
First, when asked how much she knew about the Great Train Robbery, which took place in 1963, Sheridan replied, “I knew bits and bobs, but there was a lot I didn’t know.
“One of the things I discovered was Ronnie Biggs wasn’t even a big part of it.
“He was blown up like he was the mastermind of it all, but he wasn’t that great a crook at all!
“The fascinating thing is that first they managed to pull the robbery off – it was huge at the time – and also that Ronnie went on the run for so long… Read more & comment »
It’s been revealed today that when former Gavin & Stacey actress Sheridan Smith auditioned for the role of Charmian Biggs – for the forthcoming ITV drama, Mrs Biggs – she was so moved by the plight of the Great Train Robber Ronnie Bigg’s wife, that she wept openly as she read for the part.
Sheridan was of course just a child as the real life Charmian was facing heartbreak and the breakdown of her family’s lives after Ronnie escaped from prison and fled to Australia and then Brazil, where he eventually remarried and had a son in order to evade extradition.
The Daily Mirror reports, “At her audition for Mrs Biggs, Sheridan was the last to try out for the role.
“She was asked to portray Charmian’s grief at the loss of her 10-year-old son Nicholas, who was killed in a car crash after the Biggs had gone on the run in Australia.”
Apparently, Sheridan’s powerful performance left the producers “speechless”, and of being able to parlay such on-screen emotion, Sheridan said, “You have to draw on personal things to get that kind of emotion… Read more & comment »
In What’s On TV magazine this week, former Gavin & Stacey star Sheridan Smith has revealed that her new role as Charmian Biggs – the wife of notorious Great Train robber Ronnie Biggs – made her broody!
As you’re probably aware – and if not, you will be if you watch the five part ITV drama – Mrs Biggs tells the true life story of Charmian and Ronnie’s marriage, which, from the outset, was marred by financial woes as they struggled to raise their young children.
So, seeing a way out of their difficulties, Ronnie agreed to become one of a gang of criminals who would steal from the Royal Mail train August 1963. The consequences of the robbery – which was depicted in hit movie, Buster, which starred Phil Collins and Julie Walters – were to devastate Charmian’s life.
However, though she had no idea he’d been part of the infamous gang, when he was imprisoned, she stood by him… Read more & comment »