Joanna Lamond Lumley, OBE, FRGS (born 1 May 1946) is a British actress, best known for her roles in the British television series The New Avengers, Sapphire and Steel, Absolutely Fabulous and Sensitive Skin. She is also a former model, a human rights activist (best known for her support for Gurkhas, the exiled Tibetan people and government and Prospect Burma, a charity that offers grants to Burmese students, for whom she broadcast the BBC Radio 4 charity appeal in 2001 ), and an animal welfare activist.
Joanna Lamond Lumley was born on 1 May 1946 in Srinagar, in the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. Her parents were Major James Rutherford Lumley, who served in the 6th Gurkha Rifles, a regiment of the British Indian Army, and Beatrice Rose Weir. They married in 1941. After the independence of India in 1947, the Lumleys moved to Malaya (now, Malaysia) and later settled in Kent, England. Joanna was educated at St Mary's School in Northiam, East Sussex, England, and afterward attended the Lucy Clayton finishing school.
Tall, slim and blonde, she spent three years as a photographic model, and appeared in an UK television advertisement for Nimble bread first screened in 1969. Lumley appeared in an early episode of The Bruce Forsyth Show in 1966 and also worked as a house model for Jean Muir.