Angels characters in 1978-1980

All the characters listed...


Anna Newcross is a 24 year-old Student Nurse, divorced and living with her mother and three-year-old daughter.

According to the Angels Annual, 1979: Anna finds life at St.Angela's difficult at first, with the training school reminiscent of her unhappy school days and she isn't happy with the restrictions of the institution. She gets on well with the other Nurses. Although she sometimes finds it hard to cope with the strain of her job and the demands of her daughter, Anna is determined to see her course through.

Anna was played by Joanna Munro, who is probably better known for being one of Esther Rantzen's sidekicks on 'That's Life' in the late '80s.


Beverley Slater was a pupil nurse who took an epileptic fit while on duty on Katy's ward. Her job was in jeopardy since she had never disclosed the fact that she was epileptic. It emerged that as a young child she had several fits but her parents never told her about them as they felt ashamed. Since the condition could be treated by medication she was allowed to continue her training. After qualifying as an S.E.N. she moved to the new hospital with Rose where she specialised in renal care. Pupil Nurse Beverley Slater was played by Judith Jacob, who eventually ended up in Eastenders.


Adrienne O'Shea had come over from Ireland to do her training and although constantly present, never had many big storylines. She was a good friend of Liz and lived in the nurses' home. It was here she saved Rose's brother after he fell asleep in Rose's room with a lit cigarette. Together with Liz they rescued a pregnant squatter who was in labour. Adrienne was played by Fay Howard.


Elizabeth Fitt was a public school educated girl who always spoke very properly. Was very close to her father and took his death badly. Initially she always felt she was cleverer than anyone else and on many occasions fell foul of the sisters and senior nurses especially Rose and Katy. This was especially true with Rose, not only were their backgrounds completely different but so was their attitude towards wealth. Having a private patient on the ward (even in those far gone days) irked Rose immensely and she would go out her way to upset them. Liz on the other hand fawned over these patients, believing them to be entitled to better service than ordinary ward patients, waiting on them hand and foot. Shared Anna's flat and was good friends with her and Adrienne.

Nurse Fitt was played by Susan Gilmore


Fleur Baratt was the nurse who had a fling with a doctor when he was engaged to Katy, causing Katy to call it off. After this she moved on to Ron, who had been involved with Anna up until she called it off as he got too serious. Although the three of them remained good friends she was always jealous of the friendship Anna and Ron retained, even to the point of distrusting Ron as he sat by Anna's bed when she was in a coma. They eventually married in a registrar office since neither set of parents could compromise on the type of wedding. She never qualified but had a child.

Fleur was played by Sharon Rosita, another former Angel who ended up in Eastenders.


According to the Angels Annual 1979, Jay Harper's parents were killed when she was a baby and she lived with her Grandmother until she was eight. When Granny was hospitalised. Jay was sent to a children's home.

Played by Shelley King, Jay was a 2nd year Student Nurse who lived in the Nurses' Home and tended to be shy and withdrawn, especially at any mention of happy families. At some point in the story, the stress of the job proved to be too much for her, and she took to hiding a bottle of gin in the ladies' loos. She eventually married a doctor, got pregnant and left.


One of the longer-serving characters, Katy started out as a Third Year Student Nurse, qualifying as a State Registered Nurse around 1980.

Katy Smart lived at home with her mum, dad and younger sister whom she shared a room with, this causing numerous arguments when she was trying to study for her SRN. During her third year she was engaged to a doctor but during her exams she found out he was also seeing Fleur, Fleur not seeing this as a problem as it was 'just fun' . Katy broke off the engagement. By the time she came back qualified she was married to Roger a Policeman. Her explanation to a patient (Bob Cryer from The Bill) was it was the uniform (his not hers). Roger's true traits emerged, he was a bully who expected her to give up her job and cook/clean for him, smashing plates when things didn't go his way, we finally saw him hit her when he came to the hospital acusing her of locking the front door to their flat and he couldn't get in. Just after this, Katy handed in her notice putting a brave face on it saying it was her decision. Fortunately for us she returned as an agency nurse. Returning home early one day , Roger came out the bedroom pulling the door closed. Katy knew there was someone in there and eventually her close friend Sister Price came out. As they were both working on the same ward, the scenes between the two were excellent. Roger moved in with Sister Price; but she didn't put up with him trying to treat her as he did Katy and threw him out. This reconciled her and Katy and eventually they got back together, buying a house.

Katy was played by Shirley Cheriton, and is probably better known as one of the original Eastenders cast.

Paul writes: Michelle Holder was a quiet and shy young student nurse who was never really close to any of the other nurses or involved with anyone. She lived at home and when her parents were moving away to help solve their marriage problem her mother insisted she move too and give up her training at St. Angela's. Although her tutor tried to persuade her mother otherwise it wasn't until Michelle finally stood up to her mother for the first time, threatening to tell her father about what her mother had been getting up to, did she get to stay. In her reincarnation as a Alison Clarke, a pupil nurse in the oher hospital she initially played the same type of character.

Student Nurse Holder was played by Juliet Waley.


Rose Butchins began as a Pupil Nurse before donning the green uniform of a State Enrolled Nurse.

Paul writes: Rose was a working class Northern girl who didn't let on with her father, her mother was never mentioned. She had one brother who came to stay in her room in the nurses home when she was an SEN, as a qualified she got a room to herself, having previously roomed with Jay whom she didn't get on with. As an SEN trainee, her title before qualifying was Pupil Nurse: only SRN trainees could call themselves Student Nurses. This was something Rose always hated as she felt that although they did the same job they were treated like second class nurses. This often led to clashes with the tutors and in her student days her abrupt manner often saw Sisters reporting her for attitude problems. When Rose qualified she found she wanted that bit more that the SEN title would bring her and embarked on her SRN training at the other hospital. Rose's favourite ward was ICU where she and Katy worked. At St Angela's, she got involved with a patient (Kevin Whitely of Inspector Morse / Auf Wiedersein Pet fame); but didn't get serious about anyone until she moved to the other hospital, getting seriously involved with a male nurse ( I think the name was Den or something like that), unfortunately for her she later discovered Anna was doing the dirty on her, discovering the two of them when she headed back to London to surprise him (he was there meant to be in a boxing match). At the new hospital we found out she had a thing about treating eyes and hated being put on an eye ward. Her career finally came to an end caused by that old temper. She tried to stop a visitor seeing his son and when he pushed she pushed back sending him to the floor just as someone came in. They both ended up in court (Den and Anna there to support her) and were both found guilty causing Rose to give up nursing. We last saw her with rucksack on back heading off after saying goodbye to Den and Anna.

Kathryn Apanowicz was another ex-Angel who ended up in Eastenders. She's currently a DJ on BBC Radio Leeds and was the partner of Richard Whiteley, the late lamented Countdown host and wearer of garish ties.


Sarah Lloyd-Smith was a Second Year student. In her case, it was definitely a family tradition as her father was a top consultant at St.Angelas and her brother was there as well as a medical student.

From Angels Annual 1979: Only when her three-year course was well underway did Sarah begin to have doubts about her career; but a long talk with Daddy sorted things out in her mind. Sarah is a fairly good nurse; but often lacks concentration and tends to get under the skins of the Sisters and Nursing Officers mainly because her father is one of St.Angela's bigwigs and she's therefore treated differently to the other students.

Sarah was originally played by Claire Walker. Paul tells me that the character went off on an extended holiday with her family; but when she returned later on in the series, she was played by Kate Lock, who features in all the pictures.


From the Angels Annual, 1979: Sister Jean MacEwen came from a tough Glasgow council estate. Her parents paid to get her a private education, and she is very conscious of the sacrifices they made for her. Coming from a depressed area, she is militantly pro-women's lib (this was the '70s) and devolution. Jean was never afraid to speak her mind, be it to the doctors or other nurses; but she did have a compassionate side when dealing with the students.

Jean MacEwen was played by Carol Holmes

Sister Mahon was played by Philomena McDonagh, a strict character but who could share a joke. If you remember the first series of Grange Hill, she was one of the main adult characters, playing a rather strict teacher.

Sister Valerie Price was played byDeborah Manship.