Kay Mellor's friend breaks down in tears after actress's death
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Kay Mellor OBE, the English actress, scriptwriter and director, died on Sunday, May 15, leaving behind her husband, two daughters and four grandchildren, and a strong legacy in production. Following in her showbiz footsteps are her two daughters, Gaynor Faye and Yvonne Francas.
After falling pregnant at 16 with her first child Yvonne, Kay married the father, Anthony Mellor, when she was just 17.
On their wedding day, the vicar told her “it won’t last.” But the couple enjoyed 50 years of marriage until her “sudden and untimely” death last weekend.
It wasn’t long after they tied the knot that they welcomed their second daughter, Gaynor, in 1971 when Kay was 19.
Kay’s 30-year-career penning and acting in a number of hit TV shows may have inspired her daughters, as both have made a reputable mark in the entertainment industry, too.
READ MORE: TV writer and actress Kay Mellor, 1951-2022 – Obituary
Who is Yvonne Francas?
Born in 1967, Yvonne, now 55, is an actress and producer most well known for Strictly Confidential, Scott & Bailey, and the BBC drama series, The Syndicate.
As well as The Syndicate, Yvonne also produced Fat Friends, another series written by her late mother.
Her producing career isn’t just limited to these shows; Yvonne was also the executive producer of BBC’s drama series The Chase as well as In The Club – both co-written by her mother and sister, Gaynor.
According to Yvonne’s Linkedin profile, she has been an executive producer for Rollem Productions Company Limited, set up by Kay, since February 2020.
Who is Gaynor Faye?
Born on August 26, 1971, Kay’s second-born Gaynor is a 50-year-old actress and writer, best known for playing Judy Mallett in Coronation Street from 1995 to 1999, and more recently, Megan Macey in Emmerdale from 2012 to 2019.
Gaynor’s career, like Yvonne, has woven her own work with her late mother’s, having starred in a number of Kay’s productions as well as co-writing some of the pieces.
Gaynor starred in Fat Friends, as well as the stage version of Kay’s drama Band of Gold, of which she left Emmerdale to take up in 2019.
Gaynor said, at the time: “I was working on Emmerdale and got involved in workshopping Band of Gold and people just loved it… absolutely loved it.
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“Then I got asked if I would be in it, but I was still in Emmerdale, so then I had to make the choice whether or not I was going to leave Emmerdale or not. That was a big choice to make.
“She really wanted me in it. She really liked my version of Rose so, for her, she really wanted me to do it. But it was a big decision I had to make and I didn’t make it lightly.”
This decision came after Gaynor said she wouldn’t star in any more of her mother’s productions, having also starred in The Chase, which she and her mother co-created in 2006.
Gaynor said: “I love everything my mum does. She writes brilliant dialogue and great characters, especially strong women.
“But I’ve been in her stuff and I’ve made a conscious decision I wasn’t going to do any more.
“I made it as an actress in my own right and I didn’t want anyone thinking that I just did her stuff.”
Acting aside, Gaynor also participated in ITV’s Dancing on Ice with skate partner Daniel Whiston in 2006, and was the first ever to be crowned champion.
In September 2010, Gaynor also took part in ITV’s Loose Women as a guest panellist, followed by Lorraine a year after.
Most recently, Gaynor played Cheryl Armitage in the BBC One drama The Syndicate in March 2021.
Are Yvonne and Gaynor married?
Gaynor lives with long-term partner Mark Pickering, the journalist and broadcast commentator, in Leeds, West Yorkshire.
The couple have two children, Lily Mae and Oliver.
However, it’s not publicly known whether or not Yvonne is married, but her last name could suggest she might be.
Details also haven’t been published on her children, however, as per sources, Kay has four grandchildren; two of which would belong to Yvonne.
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