Padbury came to prominence as an actor in 1966, when she joined the cast of the long-running ATV soap opera Crossroads. She played the role of Stephanie "Stevie" Harris, foster daughter to the show's main character, Meg Mortimer (Noele Gordon).
She was cast as the Second Doctor's new companion, Zoe Heriot, in Doctor Who in 1968. She became very close to her co-stars Frazer Hines and Patrick Troughton. Padbury tells many fond stories about the practical jokes they played on each other during rehearsals; perhaps the most famous tale she told about this was when, in rehearsal, she fell asleep. As she was wearing a kilt, Patrick Troughton undid the clasp and then woke her up. Startled, she leaped up and the kilt fell off. In those days, the rehearsals for Doctor Who were held in a Church hall - the moment Wendy leaped up and screamed was the exact moment the Vicar walked into the hall. Wendy now says, very fondly of Patrick Troughton, that he had deliberately timed it so!
Her connection with Doctor Who, after she left the programme (at the same time as Hines and Troughton) was not quite over. She appeared in Doctor Who and the Daleks in Seven Keys to Doomsday (1974), a stage play at the Adelphi Theatre London based on the television series, in which she played a companion named Jenny, opposite Trevor Martin as the Doctor. She made a cameo appearance, again opposite Hines and Troughton in Doctor Who's twentieth anniversary story, The Five Doctors.
Other roles include co-presenter of the second series of Score with the Scaffold. She was also in Freewheelers, in which she played Sue. She made a series of appearances in the British soap opera Emmerdale (then known by its original title Emmerdale Farm) co-incidentally opposite Frazer Hines, one of the major stars of that show.
Wendy voiced Lorraine Baynes in the Big Finish Doctor Who audio story Davros and the Time Eater in Jago & Litefoot audio story Chronoclasm. She reprised the role of Zoe in several Big Finish audio plays: Fear of the Daleks, Legend of the Cybermen, Echoes of Grey, Prison in Space, Tales from the Vault, The Memory Cheats, The Uncertainty Principle, The Rosemariners, The Apocalypse Mirror, The Queen of Time, Lords of the Red Planet, The Dying Light, Second Chances, Last of the Cybermen, The Isos Network and The Integral.
In an interview with Doctor Who Magazine, Padbury explained that, although she no longer appears at Doctor Who conventions, nor does she speak about her time on the programme, it is not because she is ungrateful or bitter towards the programme, but because she feels she no longer has anything new to say about her time in the show. Since her retirement, she has returned to the convention 'scene'.
She is now retired and lives in France, having previously acted as a theatrical agent. Nicholas Courtney, Colin Baker and Mark Strickson, all former Doctor Who actors, were among her clients. She also helped to discover Matt Smith when he was at the National Youth Theatre.
- Internet Movie Database at the
- ↑ REF: Who-ology: The Official Miscellany
- ↑ Doctor Who Official (7 December 2016). Happy birthday to the brilliant Zoe Heriot - Wendy Padbury!. Twitter. Retrieved on 14 December 2016.