Helen is fragile but doggedly independent.
|Fact title||Fact data|
|Played by:||Louiza Patikas|
|Born:||16 April 1979|
|Occupation:||Shop manager / cheesemaker|
|Lives at:||Bridge Farm|
Her tendency to look on the darker side of life was not helped by her relationship with intense Greg Turner, who later committed suicide.
Her grief set her on the road to insecurity and self-doubt and she succumbed to an eating disorder, losing her way for a while in her confused attempts to find her identity.
Counselling and the support of mum Pat and dad Tony set her on the road to recovery, and she's enjoyed the success of the farm's shop and her own Borsetshire Blue cheese, while helping Oliver Sterling manufacture and launch his own brand.
But more disappointment in her personal life led her to a big decision - to become pregnant by donor insemination. Tony in particular found it hard to accept her choice, but with the emergency delivery of baby Henry on 2 January 2011, the rift seemed to melt away.
Helen seemed happy with Henry as the male in her life. But a short-lived affair with a married man - Rob Titchener - threw her into disarray.
Could you keep an eye on Henry while I run these over to the shop? Helen Archer
- Likes - Being in control, cheese
- Dislikes - People questioning her decision making
- Highs - The birth of baby Henry
- Lows - The death of her brother John in a tractor accident; Greg's suicide
Louiza is half Greek, and spent the first few years of her life in Athens. She has also lived in France. She has a first class degree in French and Drama, and she trained at the Drama Studio in London, where she was awarded Best Actress.
Louiza’s television credits include ITV’s comedy-drama Planespotting, Gimme 6 and The Colour of Funny. Film work includes Italian feature film Devil’s Eye and British films Inside Out, Bullies and Virgin Birth.
She has performed in numerous stage and radio plays in the UK and France, and she is a successful voiceover artist. She also works as a freelance fashion stylist and journalist. She has written for BA High Life magazine, The Daily Telegraph and Mr & Mrs Smith, where she is a regular reviewer.
Her portrayal of Helen Archer contributed to The Archers winning the MIND Champion of the Year Award 2005. The storylines singled out included Greg Turner’s depression and suicide, and Helen’s grief and subsequent eating disorder.
Louiza lives in London with her husband and son. She makes regular visits to her Greek family in Athens and to her mother’s home in Italy, as well as trips to Paris and Bordeaux to see old friends. She recently travelled to Japan, and if it weren’t for her dislike of fish and seafood she would love to live there.
Other career highlights
Making the ITV comedy drama Planespotting in 2005. Not only did we shoot in Portugal, but that was how I met my husband, Jonny.
As Helen, the brilliant eating disorder storyline – it was so well written and given lots of space to develop.
I couldn’t follow his joke because I was too excitedLouiza Patikas
As me, meeting Prince Charles at St James’s Palace for the programme’s 50th anniversary celebration. I couldn’t follow his joke because I was too excited, but I pretended to, and laughed when I hoped the punchline came. I think it was about chihuahuas.
Louiza's thoughts on Helen Archer
There are many shades to Helen; some may say predominantly ‘deadly night-’ shades, but I think she has been misunderstood ever since her teenage run-ins with Clarrie. She is an ambitious, competitive career woman, but also home-loving and devoted to her family. She may have a few hard edges, but fate has smote in myriad ways leaving Helen vulnerable yet still standing. I think she’s a trouper. I’m glad she’s aiming higher professionally these days; much as she enjoys being knee-deep in Borsetshire Blue cheese, there’s more to her than that.
- Actor - Jeanne Moreau, and I’m a huge fan of Mark Rylance.
- Book - The official Scrabble Wordbook.
- Film - Impossible to pick one, but I’m a sucker for Jacques Tati, especially Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot and Mon Oncle. I’ve just rewatched The Godfather films, which I think are fantastic.
- Helen announces her baby intentions (Feb 2010) Duration: 00:55
- Tony can't be happy that Helen is pregnant (May 2010) Duration: 00:52
- Helen's baby is small for dates (Nov 2010) Duration: 00:59
- Helen feels Tony is against her (Dec 2010) Duration: 01:00
- Tony meets his new grandson Henry (Jan 2011) Duration: 00:51
List of current characters and actors
- Abbie Tucker
- Adam Macy Played by Andrew Wincott
- Alan Franks Played by John Telfer
- Alice Carter Played by Hollie Chapman
- Alistair Lloyd Played by Michael Lumsden
- Amy Franks Played by Jennifer Daley
- Andrew Eagleton Played by John Flitcroft
- Annabelle Schrivener Played by Julia Hills
- Anthea Jennings Played by Joanna Brookes
- Becky Holden Silent character
- Ben Archer Played by Thomas Lester
- Bert Fry Played by Eric Allan
- Bert Horrobin Played by Martyn Read
- Bethany Tucker
- Brenda Tucker Played by Amy Shindler
- Brian Aldridge Played by Charles Collingwood
- Caroline Sterling Played by Sara Coward
- Celia Redwood Played by Anita Dobson
- Charlie Morgan Played by Ben Caplan
- Christine Barford Played by Lesley Saweard
- Christopher Carter Played by Will Sanderson-Thwaite
- Clarrie Grundy Played by Heather Bell
- Clive Horrobin Played by Alex Jones
- Coriander Snell Played by Alexandra Lilley
- Dan Hebden Lloyd Played by Will Howard
- Darrell Makepeace Played by Dan Hagley
- David Archer Played by Timothy Bentinck
- Debbie Aldridge Played by Tamsin Greig
- Derek Fletcher Silent character
- Donna Horrobin Played by Alison Belbin
- Ed Grundy Played by Barry Farrimond
- Eddie Grundy Played by Trevor Harrison
- Edgar Titcombe Silent character
- Elizabeth Pargetter Played by Alison Dowling
- Ellen Rogers Played by Rosemary Leach
- Elona Makepeace Played by Eri Shuka
- Emma Grundy Played by Emerald O'Hanrahan
- Fallon Rogers Played by Joanna Van Kampen
- Freda Fry Silent character
- Freddie Pargetter Played by Jack Firth
- George Grundy Played by Rui Thacker
- Grace Morgan Played by Jenny Johns
- Graham Ryder Played by Malcolm McKee
- Hayley Tucker Played by Lorraine Coady
- Hazel Woolley Played by Annette Badland
- Heather Pritchard Played by Joyce Gibbs
- Helen Archer Played by Louiza Patikas
- Henry Archer