Catherine Tate (born Catherine Ford; 12 May 1968) is an English actress, writer and comedienne. She has won numerous awards for her work on the sketch comedy series The Catherine Tate Show as well as being nominated for an International Emmy Award and seven BAFTA Awards. Following the success of The Catherine Tate Show, Tate played Donna Noblein the 2006 Christmas special of Doctor Who and later reprised her role, becoming the Doctor's companion for the fourth series in 2008. In 2011, she began a recurring role as Nellie Bertram on The Office and is now a series regular.

Early life and educationEdit

Tate was born in Bloomsbury and brought up in the Brunswick Centre. Her mother, Josephine, was a florist,and Tate has said that the character of Margaret in The Catherine Tate Show, who shrieks at the slightest of disturbances, is based largely on Josephine.

Tate never knew her father, as he left very early on in her life, and consequently, she was brought up in a female-dominated environment, being cared for by her mother, grandmother and her godparents. As a child, Tate suffered from an obsessive-compulsive disorder which centred on word association. For example, Tate was not able to leave a jumper on the floor or it might have brought misfortune to her mother whose name began with the letter "J" like jumper.

She attended St Joseph's Roman Catholic Primary School, Macklin Street, Holborn and Notre Dame High SchoolSouthwark, a south London convent secondary school for girls. By the time Tate was a teenager, she knew she wanted to follow a professional acting career and was subsequently sent to a boys' Roman Catholic school, Salesian College in Battersea at the age of 16. The school had the necessary facilities for drama. Tate left school without sitting her A-Levels. She then tried for four years to get a place in the Central School of Speech and Drama (University of London), succeeding on her fourth attempt. She studied there for three years, and until the age of 26, lived in Holborn and Bloomsbury. Prior to getting a place at the Central School of Speech and Drama, Tate went to the Sylvia Young Theatre School, but left after a week; "Even at that age, I realised I wasn't Bonnie Langford. It was very competitive", she stated. 

Personal lifeEdit

Tate's former partner is stage manager Twig Clark. They have a daughter (born at London's Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in January 2003), delivered following an emergency caesarean section. The family had a home inRichmond-upon-Thames, London. The family had both a cat and a dog, the latter of which was given to her by Jonathan Ross. Tate and Clark split before summer 2011.

Tate is the patron for the Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust, supporting the charity since August 2006. In 2011 she took part in the charity's 2011 Charity Calendar.

Tate suffered from post-natal depression, from which she only recovered after the filming of the second series of The Catherine Tate Show.She also suffers from occasional panic attacks. Regarding her personal outlook, Tate has said "I'm an incredibly negative person, so any form of success is only ever going to be a relief to me and set my default position back to neutral."

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