Who Do You Think You Are?

Celia Imrie

Series 9 - Episode 8 Celia Imrie



You’re not going mad, this episode should have aired last week, but was postponed. It’s a good one: Celia Imrie, the daughter of a spirited aristocratic mother, makes a plea at the start: “Don’t let me find a lot of boring relatives, that would be awful.”

It would indeed, so luckily Imrie unearths terrific stories about some plucky, even notorious ancestors. Her great-grandfather-times-eight William, Lord Russell, was an outspoken Whig politician who fell spectacularly from grace. Another relative was a sparky woman who spent time imprisoned in the Tower of London for her alleged misdeeds. “This is the best drama I have come across for yonks,” coos Imrie. It’s a very document-based episode, of course, but these ancient pages are scintillating.


Actress Celia Imrie always knew she came from a long line of aristocrats on her mother's side but has resisted finding out any more about her illustrious heritage, fearing her ancestors will turn out to be stuffy and boring. Now she finally sets out on that journey and is quickly proved wrong as she traces her family back to the 17th century, uncovering stories of political intrigue and impotence. She discovers one ancestor who broke all the rules and ended up in the Tower of London, and explores the extraordinary legacy of another who was accused of plotting to kill a king.

Cast & Crew

Contributor Celia Imrie
Director Elizabeth Dobson
Series Producer Colette Flight