Who is Raquel Cassidy?
Raquel Josephine Dominic Cassidy was born in Fleet, Hampshire, England, on 22 January 1968, her zodiac sign is Aquarius and she holds British nationality. She is an actress who is perhaps best known for her portrayal of Phyllis Baxter in the final three seasons of the romantic drama series “Downton Abbey”, created by Julian Fellowes, and which starred Hugh Bonneville, Phyllis Logan and Elizabeth McGovern. The story aired from 2010 to 2015, and follows the Crawley family living in Great Britain in the early 20th century, and was also a hit in Europe and the US, as it won 57 awards including three Golden Globes, while it was nominated for 226 other awards.
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Last night on the magnificent stage of The Hackney Empire, to mark the beginning of a partnership between @hefutures & @forestschoole17 to continue and expand the Creative Futures fabulous & life enhancing/saving provision of free workshops, events and more to children who otherwise may never get such opportunities. Through the night I heard & witnessed how lives had been touched in deeply significant ways. A powerful and moving evening. Looking forward to the proposed drama festival which will bring the young people of Hackney & surrounding boroughs & those from Forest School together. Now that’s a festival I’d like to be at! Well done to @yaminchoudury & all at HE & to Gemma Van Praagh & all at Forest School for making this happen. Thanks to @kurtgeiger for the bag & fab comfy heels, @alexandrahakim for those beautiful earrings & @ellielines for styling me (again!) & for the effortlessly chic dress. Photo by @slawek.zieba.photography #artforall
Early life, family and education
Raquel was raised alongside her two older brothers in Fleet by their British father who was a lawyer, and their Spanish mother who was a model, and who became a housewife after giving birth to Raquel – the family was very close, and often dined-out together.
Raquel grew up dreaming about becoming a model. She studied at Farnborough Hill Covenant, when she also started going to a local theatre, and steadily fell in love with acting. Upon matriculation in 1985, she enrolled at Girton College, Cambridge, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in modern languages in 1989 – she continued her education pursuing a PhD in biological anthropology, but soon quit as she wanted to focus on her acting career.
She appeared in many theatre plays in the following 10 years, before finally getting an opportunity to appear on the big screen.
Roles in TV series
Raquel has appeared in around 70 movies and TV series, and we are about to mention some of her most notable performances in this article.
She made her debut TV series appearance in 1998, when she guest starred as Pamela Boxer in the British crime mini-series “Killer Net”, while the following year saw her appear in a single episode of the British police procedural series “The Bill”. She gained recognition in 2001 when invited to play the main character Susan Gately in the comedy drama “Teachers”, which also starred Ursula Holden Gill, Gillian Bevan and Lloyd McGuire, and follows the school staff’s private and business lives.
The following years saw her guest star in many series, such as the British medical drama “Holby City” in 2003, the British sitcom “The Worst Week of My Life” in 2004 and another sitcom “According to Bex” in 2005.
In 2008, Raquel appeared as Maureen Summerhayes in the episode “Mrs McGinty’s Dead” of the mystery drama “Agatha Christie’s Poirot”, and a few of her following roles were in the British procedural crime drama “New Tricks” in 2009, the British crime drama “DCI Banks” in 2011, and the British crime series “Hustle” in 2012. The year 2013 saw her play Sabine in the British comedy series “Heading Out”, which starred Dominic Coleman, Shelley Conn and Steve Oram, and follows a successful woman who has been given an ultimatum by her friends: she will either come out to her parents or they will tell them.
She guest starred in single episodes of both the British mystery crime drama “Jonathan Creek” in 2014, and the British crime drama “Vera” in 2015, before being invited to portray the lead character Miss Hardbroom in the British-German fantasy children’s series “The Worst Witch”. It has been airing since 2017, and follows the life of a girl who is attending Cackle’s Academy, at which she is learning how to be a witch – the series has won two awards and has been nominated for five others.
Three of Raquel’s most recent roles in series have been in the British crime drama “Silent Witness” and the British comedy “W1A” both in 2017, and the crime thriller drama “Strangers” (also known as “White Dragon”) in 2018.
Roles in movies
Raquel made her debut film appearance in 2002 when cast to play Romy in the Lisa Gornick’s romantic comedy “Do I Love You?” which starred Harri Alexander, Birgitta Bernhard and Darren Black, and which is about life and the questions one might face when it comes to love. In the same year, she portrayed Felicia in the comedy “Before You Go”, which follows three sisters who meet and talk about their lives at their mother’s funeral.
The year 2005 saw Raquel appear as Petra Loewenberg in the British black comedy “Festival”, and two years later she starred in the thriller “The Boat People” which failed to attract much attention. Raquel also starred as Maya in the British-Indie comedy “Tick Tock Lullaby” in 2007.
She appeared in her first short movie in 2008 entitled “Nightwalking”, and in 2013 Raquel played Valerie Almond in the drama “The Other Child” (original “Das Andere Kind”) which starred Neil Bell, Satnam Bhogal and Cliff Burnett, and was closely based on the eponymous novel written by Charlotte Link.
Three of Raquel’s most recent roles in movies have been in the independent historical romantic drama “Cliffs of Freedom”, the historical drama “Downton Abbey” based on the same-titled series, and the docudrama “Official Secrets” all released in 2019.
Theatre plays and radio
In 1997, Raquel played Viola in William Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” performed at Royal Court Theatre, and in 1998 she played Desdemona in Shakespeare’s “Othello”, and Ruth in the play “Threesome” at Old Red Lion Theatre.
The year 2002 saw her star as Joyce in the John Mighton’s “Possible Worlds” performed at Tron Theatre, while three of her final roles in theatre plays before retiring from stage acting were in Shakespeare’s “MacBeth” in 2004, the adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s novel “Anna Karenina” in 2005, and the comic opera “Mirandolina” in which she portrayed the title character in 2006.
Raquel has guest starred in two radio shows – she voiced Jo in “Spending My Inheritance” in 2008, and Suzan in the sitcom “Ed Reardon’s Week” in 2015.
Love life and husband
Raquel is very secretive when it comes to her private matters, and has kept the details of her love life hidden from the media’s attention.
There are, however, rumors circulating the internet that she is a married woman who exchanged wedding vows with her husband sometime in the early 2000s, and that the two have since been living together in Los Angeles, California but have agreed not to have children – this hasn’t been confirmed by Raquel, and no proof has been provided to support these rumors.
Conversely, it’s believed by some that Raquel is a lesbian, and two of her fans have written on the Reddit forum about having seen her being rather too close to a female friend at a club back in the late ‘90s, but these posts have since been removed.
As of September 2020, Raquel is single, hasn’t married and doesn’t have children.
Hobbies and other interests
Raquel is interested in doing charity work, and has attended numerous charity events and donated money to organizations helping underprivileged children and war veterans.
She was physically very active during her 20s and 30s, as she had three to four training sessions at the gym each week, and occasionally went running and jogging – she is also focused on her mental health, and has been meditating and doing yoga to this day.
She is a lover of animals with cats being her favorites.
Raquel has her own favorite actors and actresses, some of whom are Bruce Willis, Elvis Presley and Natalie Portman, and some of her favorite movies are “The Sixth Sense”, “Viva Las Vegas” and “Leon: The Professional”.
Net worth and height
Raquel’s age is 52. She has long brown hair and brown eyes, her height is 5ft 7ins (1.7m) and she weighs around 135lbs (61kgs).
As of September 2020, her net worth has been estimated at around $1 million.