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24 September 2014
Disgusted, he says "please cancel my hotdog..."

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Caroline AherneCaroline Aherne
Caroline Aherne was born in London but grew up in Withenshawe in Manchester. She studied drama at Liverpool Polytechnic, then took a job as a BBC secretary, all the while honing her performance skills on the comedy circuit.

She found national fame in 1994 with both The Fast Show and The Mrs Merton Show. Though 'Checkout Girl' was a popular character in the The Fast Show, it was Mrs Merton who really made her name.

The sweet old lady would ask the most outrageous, below-the-belt questions of her guest stars. She famously asked Debbie McGee, "So, what attracted you to the millionaire Paul Daniels?". Aherne won Best Female Comedy Performance at the 1996 British Comedy Awards for the role.

As Mrs Merton's popularity diminished, Aherne struck gold a second time with The Royle Family. This was an unusual sitcom format: A working class family sat in front of the TV, and not much happened. When it did, you noticed. The secret of its success was its keen writing and perfect casting.

In 2001 Caroline Aherne announced her retirement from TV and emigrated to Australia. Within a year she had written and produced Dossa and Joe - a sitcom about an Aussie couple who don't do very much. She returned to Britain in 2002.

Aherne herself has become something of a reclusive figure since then, but hit the headlines again in mid-2003, when it was reported that she had sold her autobiography in a £1 Million deal.

More about Caroline Aherne in the Guide »»
  2002 Dossa and Joe - Writer, Director (TV)
  1998 The Royle Family - Co-Writer, Performer (TV)
  1994 The Mrs Merton Show - Writer, Performer (TV)
  1994 The Fast Show - Writer, Performer (TV)

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