Mary Tamm: 1950 – 2012

News Louisa Mellor 26 Jul 2012 - 08:39

The actress who first played the fourth Doctor's Time Lady companion, Romana, has passed away at the age of 62

It’s never the kind of news anybody wants to pass on, and we do so with regret: Mary Tamm, best known to Doctor Who fans as the first incarnation of companion Romana, passed away in hospital this morning following a long battle with cancer.

Yorkshire-born Tamm played the Gallifreyan companion to the fourth Doctor, Tom Baker, between 1978 and 1979 in The Key to Time season arc. Before appearing on Doctor Who, Tamm had featured in a number of films including The Odessa File and The Likely Lads, and appeared on a number of television dramas and soaps since her departure from the sci-fi series.

The sad news of Tamm’s death comes just a month after that of fellow companion actress Caroline John, who played Dr Liz Shaw opposite Jon Pertwee. Our thoughts and best wishes go to both families. 

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Sad news. Great actress, lovely woman. Mary, you were my Romana. RIP.

Oh. :-( She was my favourite Romana. She gave an element of class and elegance to the companion role, even upstaging Tom Baker in some episodes. Such a loss.

After, almost, 50 years of the show I expect we'll be losing more and more of the iconic actors from the series and each time we lose one of them, a part of my childhood dies along with them.

An absolute classic actress who brought so much and left her mark on the history of the show - she'll be sadly missed.

Miserable news.She did a tremendous job playing Romana.I remember she was instantly popular despite Romana's attitude of superiority and confidence and a lot of actresses would have struggled with that.Hope the regeneration is easy again.Condolences to Mary's family,friends and colleagues.Everythings a little less beautiful now.

Terrible news indeed. It's been a horrible last couple years or so on that front.
RIP, and thank you.

It's so sad. It's horrendous for anyone to suffer like that, and battle for so long, only to be taken when still so young. RIP to both parties and condolencies to the pairs familes and friends

This is horrible news. The Doctor Who community has had some heavy losses the last couple of years. RIP, Mary! In my eyes, you are a legend. xoxo Say hi to Sarah, the Brig, and Liz Shaw, and everyone else from our family!

sad news .does anyone know if she had already recorded the planned big finish audios with Tom that are scheduled for next year ?

Yes. As far as I'm aware they were recorded near the end of 2011 and are scheduled for release between March and July 2013. At the time I thought it odd they were recording the stories so far in advance ... I guess we now know why they did that if she was ill.

Aww that's a tragic shame, 62 year young, same as my poor old Mum. Far to young an age. Bloody cancer seems to be getting everyone :-(
Loved Marys Romana.

May she rest in peace.

My childhood is fading before my eyes. Within two years we've lost Sarah-Jane, The Brig, Liz, and now Romana I. I am sad

I've
always said I'll never have another con experience like TimeGate 2009 in Atlanta. I cosplay her Romana and she loved that I had made her outfits. Mary and
I talked about so much together . . . how much we were missing our mothers (she
said "Mums"), being married to a man with a pirate name (Ringrose), our
children, her daughter going back to school, her precious grandson . . . she'd
go shopping and then come back to show me what she had bought for him . . . just
usual everyday stuff as people, not as celebrity/fan. She was an amazing person--so easy to relate to
and I'm so glad I got to know her a little bit.
Anita

Big Finish record the audios WAY in advance. Series 3 of the Tom Baker stories are currently being recorded with a January 2014 release date!

Incidentally, Mary Tamm will be in 7 stories to be released in consecutive months beginning in January 2013.

People usually ask "Who was your first Doctor?" Well, Mary Tamm was my first companion, having picked up the series from the second Stones of Blood episode onwards. I didn't believe the news at first. I didn't want to.

My favourite memory of Mary apart from a personal appearance she made in Glasgow where i was fortunate enough to meet her was a promotional interview she did on Nationwide with Tom Baker. The expression on her face when Tom Baker tells Frank Bough he is not real. She obviously appreciated Frank Bough would never recover from the experience.It's probably the funniest thing i,ve ever seen.

A truly shocking loss, way before her time. I suppose we enshrine the companions as twenty-somethings yet, even then 62 is no age. Mary made such an impression, beautiful and sophisticated-an equal fort he Doctor. A very different companion from Louise's Leela. Tom Baker's tribute was very touching. Hard to believe more than half the Seventies companions are now no longer with us. This has been a terrible 18 months for fans of the classic series. RIP Mary Tamm.

Frank Bough is a fictional personality! Hilarious! Tom is baiting Bough and being so dismissive of his line of questioning. ;o)

She was definitely a lady. I always enjoyed watching her act opposite of tom baker. She will be sorely missed. RiP

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