15 certificateThe Making of a Lady is a Film programme that first aired in 2012 and has been classified a 15 certificate.

The Making of a Lady is a 3 star programme

Image for the Film programme "The Making of a Lady"

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The Making of a Lady (2012)

The classic tale tells the story of the well born, educated but penniless Emily who grew up hoping she would marry for love, but has come to realise that her priority must be survival. Opening in late Victorian London, initially in a shabby part of town, The Making of a Lady depicts genteel Emily struggling to make a living.

Fine featured but at pains never to look pretty or attract attention, Emily works for Lady Maria Byrne, a domineering, acerbic older woman who lives in a very smart house on the other side of town. During her daily duties as a lady's companion, Emily comes into contact with her employer's wealthy widower nephew, Lord James Walderhurst. Weary of Lady Maria's relentless match-making, Walderhurst cuts a rather distant figure, but he treats Emily with a great deal more respect and kindness than his aunt.

When Walderhurst realises that a favour he asked of her has lost Emily her position he is mortified. It occurs to him that the two of them could come to a practical if unromantic agreement - marriage. He admires the fact she is dedicated and hard-working and appreciates her undemanding nature which he imagines would not impact too much on the life he has chosen. He realises that he can offer her a secure home and a true independence born out of his wealth. He and Emily aren't in love, but he clearly hopes that one day affection may blossom. Emily is shocked and sad to give up her hopes of marrying for love but without other means of support her situation is such that she has little option and she finds herself accepting.

His family disapprove of the marriage, but undaunted Walderhurst marries his Cinderella and they move to his beautiful stately home.

With a ruby ring glowing on her finger, Emily is the new lady of the manor but while her relationship with her new husband very slowly starts to blossom the staff, especially the butler Litton and his housekeeper wife are less than welcoming and eye her suspiciously.

The only friendly faces in her life are Walderhurst's handsome nephew, Captain Alec Osborn and his beautiful Indian wife, Hester Osborn. They seem very much in love, which is the antithesis of Emily and Walderhurst's still unformed relationship, and she is fascinated by their passion. Significantly, Walderhurst intensely dislikes his nephew and his frequent requests for money. Osborn is Walderhurst's sole heir as long as he and Emily remain childless and Emily realises belatedly that Walderhurst's sudden proposal was hastened by the family's concerns about Alec's marriage to Hester.

Emily and Hester quickly develop a friendship and when Walderhurst decides to rejoin his regiment in India in response to an emergency, Emily is grateful for the company that she and Alec offer. Sad and insecure, with her husband having abandoned their home just as they were growing in warmth towards each other, Emily is delighted when Alec and Hester arrive to stay with her, but butler Litton is obvious in his disapproval and very suspicious of their motives.

All is not what it seems as an increasingly contented Emily has no inkling her life is actually in danger. Whilst Walderhurst risks his life overseas, his wife is in peril and she seems powerless to avoid the threat that begins to encircle her. The arrival of Hester's servant, the mysterious Ameerah only serves to heighten the jeopardy surrounding Emily.

Will Walderhurst realise the threat that hangs over her new wife? Will Emily realise her life is in danger before it's too late? Who is the secretive and shadowy Ameerah and why does she come into their lives? Can Litton, a loyal servant over many years to Lord Walderhurst, help Emily as the net closes around her?

Genre: Film

Production Year: 2012

3/5 Stars

Classification: 15 Certificate

Filmed in Colour

Made for TV


Lydia Wilson...Emily Fox Seton
Maggie Fox...Mrs. Parke
Sarah Ridgeway...Jane
Image for Joanna LumleyJoanna Lumley...Lady Maria Byrne
Image for Linus RoacheLinus Roache...Lord James Walderhurst.
Souad Faress...Ameerah
James D'Arcy...Cap. Alec Osborn
Hasina Haque...Hester Osborn
Victoria Ross...Annabelle Rivers
Lucy Gape...Agatha Slade
Malcolm Storry...Mr. Litton
Claire Hackett...Mrs. Litton