Remembering Barbara Shelley 1932-2020

“This world is the nurse of all we know,

This world is the mother of all we feel,

And the coming of death is a fearful blow

To a brain unencompass’d by nerves of steel:

When all that we know, or feel, or see,

Shall pass like an unreal mystery.”

– Percy Shelley, ‘On Death’ (1816)

I was deeply saddened to learn that my favorite Hammer Glamour girl, the incomparable Barbara Shelley, has left us at the age of 88 due to complications from contracting COVID-19 last year. She is just one of the nearly 2 million victims of the coronavirus and she won’t be the last but losing her is a terrible way to begin the New Year.

She appeared in many of my favorite British horror and science fiction films including Village of the Damned (1960), Shadow of the Cat (1961), The Gorgon (1964), Dracula, Prince of Darkness (1966) and Quatermass and the Pit (1967).

I’ve often praised Shelley’s work here so I’ve collected links to a few of the pieces I’ve written in the past as well as links to some obituaries. R.I.P. to the First Leading Lady of British Horror.

The First Leading Lady of British Horror
The Lady is a Vamp!
Stephen Weeks’ Ghost Story

BBC News
Mirror UK
Bloody Disgusting