Phyllis Logan

Last updated on the 11 May 2024 by Maeve

Phyllis Logan headshot

Mini Biography

Born:  11 January 1956, Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland. 

Phyllis Logan is a renowned actress who carved her path on both the big and small screens. Her journey began in the historic countryside surrounding Paisley, where a spark for the performing arts likely ignited during her formative years.

Phyllis Logan’s passion for acting led her to pursue formal training at the prestigious Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow. Her dedication shone through, and she graduated in 1977 with the coveted James Bridie Gold Medal, a testament to her exceptional talent.

Following graduation, Logan gained valuable experience on the stage. The Dundee Repertory Theatre served as her training ground, where she learned the intricacies of live performance.

Logan’s transition to screen acting didn’t take long. Her television debut arrived, and she began captivating audiences with her talent. A breakout role came in the 1983 film “Another Time, Another Place.” Her portrayal of Janie garnered critical acclaim and a BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer.

However, it was television that brought her wider recognition. The role of Lady Jane Felsham in the popular detective series “Lovejoy” (1986-1993) became a defining one. Logan’s portrayal of the elegant and witty Lady Jane entertained viewers for seven seasons, establishing her as a household name in the UK.

The new millennium ushered in another iconic role for Logan. In 2010, she joined the cast of the critically acclaimed period drama “Downton Abbey.” Her portrayal of the stern yet compassionate Mrs. Hughes, the head housekeeper of Downton Abbey, resonated deeply with audiences. Logan’s performance remained a constant throughout the series’ six-season run, earning her a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, shared with her fellow cast members.

Beyond her illustrious career, Phyllis Logan shares a personal life rich with love and family. In 2011, she married actor Kevin McNally and together they have a son.


BAFTA award


WINNER | Film: Most Promising Newcomer To Film for Another Time, Another Place (1984) | Scotland: Actress – TV for Guilt (2022)



Suggested viewing


Downton Abbey (2010)

Downton Abbey (2019)

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 8.7

An aristocratic family and their downstairs staff tackle the societal upheavals of the early 20th century, from the sinking of the Titanic to the rise of modernism. Upstairs, the family grapples with securing their legacy, while downstairs, the servants find love, loss and their own changing roles in a shifting world.

Top cast: Hugh Bonneville, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter, Phyllis Logan, Brendan Coyle, Michelle Dockery, Joanne Froggatt, Rob James-Collier.


Downton Abbey (2019)

Downton Abbey - Phyllis Logan and Jim Carter poster

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 7.4

Excitement fills the grand estate as the esteemed Crawley family prepares to host the King and Queen. Upstairs, drama unfolds with a potential scandal, while downstairs, loyal staff grapple with a royal visit’s disruption to their usual routine. As tensions rise, both the family and their devoted servants face a momentous event that will leave their lives forever changed.

Top cast: Hugh Bonneville, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter, Phyllis Logan, Brendan Coyle, Michelle Dockery, Kevin Doyle, Joanne Froggatt, Matthew Goode.


Downton Abbey: A New Era (2022)

Downton Abbey: A New Era

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 7.4

The Crawleys face double duty: a surprise inheritance sends them to the South of France to untangle a family secret, while a silent film crew descends on Downton, bringing a touch of Hollywood glamour (and chaos) to the grand estate. Upstairs and downstairs contend with change, both in their personal lives and the evolving world around them.

Top cast: Hugh Bonneville, Maggie Smith, Jim Carter, Phyllis Logan, Michelle Dockery, Elizabeth McGovern, Imelda Staunton, Penelope Wilton, Robert James-Collier, Lesley Nicole.


Girlfriends (2018)

Girlfriends poster

Bftv 8.5 / IMDb 6.6

Three lifelong friends, all facing challenges that come with middle age, lean on each other for support. One deals with a sudden disappearance, another fights ageism at work and the last juggles caring for an aging parent with a troubled son. Through laughter and tears, their unwavering bond helps them traverse life’s uncertainties.

Top cast: Phyllis Logan, Miranda Richardson, Zoë Wanamaker, Philip Cumbus, Daisy Head, Adrian Rawlins, Valerie Lilley, Matthew Lewis, Anthony Head, Paula Wilcox, Wendy Craig.


Another Time, Another Place (1983)

Another Time, Another Place poster

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 6.5

In World War II Scotland, a lonely farmer’s wife finds solace and forbidden love with an Italian prisoner of war. Their passionate connection blossoms amidst wartime restrictions, but their happiness is threatened by the realities of war and the cultural divide.

Top cast: Phyllis Logan, Giovanni Mauriello, Gianluca Favilla, Claudio Rosini, Paul Young, Gregor Fisher, Tom Watson, Jennifer Piercey, Denise Coffey.

More home front

A still from Summerland with Gemma Arterton


Lovejoy (1986)

Lovejoy poster

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 7.8

A roguish antiques dealer with a keen eye for treasure uses his cunning and wit to solve mysteries alongside his wealthy patron, a dim assistant, and a perpetually intoxicated friend. They journey through the murky world of auctions and stately homes, righting wrongs and uncovering hidden gems.

Top cast: Ian McShane, Dudley Sutton, Chris Jury, Phyllis Logan, Malcolm Tierney, Caroline Langrishe, Diane Parish, Pavel Douglas, Maggie Ollerenshaw.


Full filmography (@Wikipedia)


 Phyllis Logan Gallery


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