Silver screen icon to star in St Andrews

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ONE of the best-known stars of the British film industry will be in St Andrews next month.

On Tuesday, March 15, Virginia McKenna will take to the stage of the Byre Theatre to talk about her fascinating life.

Virginia joined Dundee Repertory Theatre following two years at drama college.

In the 1950s she became a star of the silver screen in films such as “Carve Her Name With Pride” - the story of British agent Violette Szabo who fought against the Nazis in Occupied France during World War Two - “A Town Like Alice,’’ starring alongside Peter Finch, and “The Cruel Sea” alongside Jack Hawkins and Donald Sinden.


She also appeared with the Royal Shakespeare Company and in West End Musicals.

Her film career continued with titles like “Ring of Bright Water” and “Born Free,” in which she starred with her late husband and fellow actor, Bill Travers.

Following “Born Free,” Virginia and Bill became involved with the many issues concerning wild animals. Eventually the ‘BORN FREE’ Foundation came into being.

Virginia now spends most of her time with the Foundation on campaigns, visiting zoos and giving talks.

She is trying to raise greater understanding of the nature of wild animals, their individuality, their right to live in the wild as nature intended and the suffering they undergo because of human domination and manipulation.

Her visit to St Andrews has been arranged by the Friends of the Byre.

Virginia’s slide presentation, starting at 7pm, will include her work in both spheres of her life.