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June Rosalind Spencer
(1919-06-14) 14 June 1919
|Known for||The Archers (1950–1952 and 1961–present)|
( m. 1942; died 2001)
June Rosalind Spencer CBE (born 14 June 1919) is an English actress best known for her role as Peggy Woolley in the BBC Radio 4 soap opera The Archers. Spencer played the character from 1950 to 1953, and returned to it from 1962 to the present day. Her total of 61 years in the role by 2020 make her the third longest-serving actor in a soap opera worldwide in any medium, surpassed only by her fellow stars of The Archers: Lesley Saweard as Christine Barford (67 years) and Patricia Greene as Jill Archer) (63 years).
Born in Nottingham, Spencer left Nottingham Girls' High School to join an amateur dramatic society and gained a London Guildhall School of Music and Drama certificate. She has played the role of Peggy Woolley (née Perkins, formerly Archer) for a period of 68 years, beginning with the pilot episode in 1950, and is the sole survivor from the original cast. In 1953/1954, she left the cast to look after her family, and the role of Peggy was taken over by Thelma Rogers. Spencer later returned to the series to play Rita Flynn, a role she had originally performed in tandem with that of Peggy. In 1961/1962, Rogers left The Archers to return to the stage, and Spencer returned to the role of Peggy.
Spencer was the guest on Desert Island Discs on 28 February 2010. Spencer spoke of the long-running Archers storyline, of her husband's Alzheimer's disease, and of her real-life husband of 59 years, Roger Brocksom, who died from the disease in 2001. She has also appeared on television on Songs of Praise and in the drama Doctors.
On 12 July 2012, Spencer was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Nottingham as a Doctor of Letters for her services to broadcasting. She was given a Lifetime Achievement award at the 2014 BBC Audio Drama Awards. She was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1991, and Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2017 Birthday Honours for services to drama and charity.
- Spencer, June, The Road to Ambridge: My Life, Peggy and The Archers
- Greenfield, Patrick (6 February 2018). "Give us credits, actor June Spencer urges The Archers". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 February 2018.
- Nottingham Post 11 June 2019. Retrieved 26 January 2020.
- Painting, Norman (20 January 2000). "Thelma Rogers". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 July 2019.
- Ratcliffe, Hannah (16 June 2017). "June Spencer receives second honour from Queen". BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 3 July 2019.
- "Desert Island Discs: June Spencer". BBC Radio 4. 28 February 2010. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
- Hemley, Matthew (26 January 2014). "Archers actor June Spencer presented lifetime achievement prize at audio drama awards". The Stage. Retrieved 26 January 2014.
- "No. 61962". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 June 2017. p. B9.
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