The Larkins: What happened to the members of the original Darling Buds Of May cast?

The Larkins: What happened to the members of the original Darling Buds of May cast?

How many of these Darling Buds stars can you remember?

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Much-loved comedy drama The Darling Buds of May was one of ITV‘s biggest hits in the 1990s. But with remake The Larkins about to air, what has happened to members of the original Darling Buds cast?

Stars such as Sir David Jason (who played Pop Larkin, recast with Bradley Walsh in the role) and Catherine Zeta Jones have remained in the public eye.

But not every Darling Buds cast member went on to command such stardom. So what have the series’ other memorable favourites been doing with themselves for the last thirty years?

Where are The Darling Buds of May cast now?

Stephanie Ralph played Victoria Larkin
Victoria Larkin was played by Stephanie Ralph (Credit: ITV Comedy YouTube)

Stephanie Ralph

Stephanie played Victoria, the youngest of the Larkin’s kids until baby Oscar was born.

She was just eight when she played the part and is now in her late thirties.

Read more: The Larkins: Bradley Walsh reveals he was crushed by a pig during filming

According to reports, Stephanie went on to work in her local pub in Kent. It is thought she aspired to be an art therapist for children with special needs.

She told journalists that she “didn’t fancy” a career in acting.

Stephanie is reported to have said of her former co-stars: “When I see them all on TV I tell my mates, ‘I’ve worked with them.’ They just tell me to shut up and make a cup of tea!”

Ian Tucker played Monty Larkin
Monty Larkin was played by Ian Tucker, seen here with Sir David Jason as Pop Larkin (Credit: ITV Comedy YouTube)

Ian Tucker

Ian played Monty Larkin, the eldest of the two Larkin lads.

He continued to act in the years following Darling Buds in series such as Touch Of Evil and Pie In The Sky.

But, according to reports, Ian moved away from acting and by the early 2000s he worked as a petrol pump attendant.

It is believed Ian suffered with cystic fibrosis from childhood. Despite his condition, Ian reportedly performed his own poetry at open mic nights.

He is reported to have reflected: “I was determined to make as much of my life as I could because of my illness and Darling Buds really helped me with that.”

Abigail Rokison-Woodall played Primrose Larkin
Primrose Larkin was recast with Abigail Rokison-Woodall taking over the role (Credit: ITV Comedy YouTube)

Abigail Rokison-Woodall

Abigail was the second actress to play Primrose Larkin, taking over from Julie Stichbury after six episodes.

After studying drama at LAMDA, she went on to do a PhD and became a Cambridge University lecturer.

Abigail continued in academia, specialising in Shakespeare for the Shakespeare Institute in Stratford upon Avon and the University of Birmingham.

Abigail Rokison-Woodall played Primrose Larkin
Abigail is now an academic (Credit: University of Birmingham YouTube)

Phillip Franks

Phillip, who played Mariette’s husband Charley, has continued to work extensively in theatre, as both an actor and director.

Phillip Franks played Charley
Charley star Phillip Franks in more recent years (Credit: Original Theatre YouTube)

The 65-year-old has also had memorable roles in Heartbeat, Absolutely Fabulous and Foyle’s War.

On several occasions in the 2000s, he appeared alongside Susie Dent in the ‘dictionary corner’ on Countdown.

Phillip Franks played Charley in Darling Buds of May
Phillip also made appearances on Countdown (Credit: YouTube)

Pam Ferris

Despite having TV credits including The Bill, Casualty and Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit to her name, playing Ma Larkin seemed to open doors for Pam.

Ma Larkin was played by Pam Ferris
Ma Larkin was played by Pam Ferris (Credit: ITV Comedy YouTube)

She went on to command TV roles in Cluedo, Middlemarch, Our Mutual Friend and Where The Heart Is in the 1990s. And the 21st Century saw her cast in Clocking Off, Rosemary & Thyme, Little Dorrit and Call The Midwife.

Pam, 73, has also enjoyed cinematic success with her unforgettable turn as Miss Trunchbull in Matilda and in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

The Darling Buds Of May cast reunite
Phillip, Sir David and Pam were reunited for a special look back at the show in 2017 (Credit: UKTV YouTube)

Catherine Zeta Jones

Darling Buds launched Catherine, who played eldest daughter Mariette, to international stardom.

Catherine Zeta Jones played Mariette Larkin
Catherine Zeta Jones played Mariette Larkin (Credit: ITV Comedy YouTube)

After moving to Hollywood, she started getting co-star billing in films such as The Mask of Zorro and Entrapment. She starred alongside Antonio Banderas and Sean Connery respectively.

But roles in films such as Traffic, Chicago and Ocean’s Twelves pushed her to another level. Catherine, 52, also won an Academy Award, a BAFTA Award and a Tony Award.

Catherine Zeta Jones played Mariette Larkin
Catherine has gone on to become a Hollywood superstar (Credit:

In 2010, she was given a CBE for her film and humanitarian work. A mum-of-two, she married Michael Douglas in 2000.

Sir David Jason

Pop Larkin
Sir David Jason played Pop Larkin (Credit: ITV Comedy YouTube)

Already a bona fide TV national treasure for his roles in Open All Hours and Only Fools and Horses by 1991, Sir David got to stretch his acting muscles more beyond comedy after Darling Buds ended in 1993.

Read more: Bradley Walsh’s weight gain on the set of The Larkins means he needs new suits for The Chase!

As well as bagging the lead role in A Touch Of Frost, Sir David was also cast in All the King’s Men and Diamond Geezer.

David Jason played Pop Larkin
Sir David Jason is one of TV’s most beloved actors (Credit: Lorraine YouTube)

The 81-year-old was knighted for services to acting in 2005.

The Larkins airs on ITV from Sunday October 10 at 8pm.

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