Ebullient Welsh-born character actress Margaret Courtenay was born on November 14, 1923 in Cardiff, Wales. With resounding voice and dominant personality, she was known for The Mirror Crack'd (1980), Duet for One (1986) and Miss Marple: The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side (1992).

Courtenay was trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. A prolific performer at the London West End, she appeared in anything from Shakespeare and Shaw, to Coward and Sondheim. Her special forte was in comedy-tinged roles as overbearing or snobbish society matrons and impossible mothers-in-law. Her screen career, from 1955, was primarily confined to television.

She was married to Ivan Pinfield. The couple had one son. She died on February 15, 1996 in London, England.