6 Things You Need To Know About Trixie Franklin

She’s the brash, brassy glamour girl of Call the Midwife, but there’s far more to Trixie Franklin than you might think…

Trixie Franklin

Helen George as Trixie Franklin.

1. HER EARLY YEARS WERE TOUGH

Always bubbly, optimistic and ready with a comical quip to make us smile, Trixie comes across like she's never had a day of hardship in her life. But nothing could be further from the truth. As she once confessed in an honest moment, "You don't forget what it's like to be putting on a show, wishing all the time that somebody who can help will say 'What's the matter?'" You see, Trixie's good-time-gal persona grew out of her reaction to her turbulent upbringing, when she had to help care for her father, who was an alcoholic ex-soldier suffering from post-traumatic stress. Probably explains why feeling compassion for others comes so naturally to her.

What makes great period drama?

2. SHE WAS ONCE ASSAULTED BY A CELEBRITY

Trixie's usually pretty savvy when it comes to the murky intentions of menfolk. Yet even her defences were dropped when she met suave, handsome TV star Clifford Raines. The intention was to bag him as a celebrity judge for a baby show and raise much-needed funds for Nonnatus House, and he was only too happy to help... on the condition that Trixie would have dinner with him. It all sounded like a fairy tale, and Trixie duly dolled herself up and went out expecting a night at one of London's poshest restaurants. Instead, he more or less pounced on her at his apartment, refusing to take no for an answer. Thank goodness Trixie managed to get out of there, and back to the embrace of her Nonnatus friends who were ready to help dab away the tears.

3. SHE MET HER FIANCE IN PRISON

Yes, Trixie really did first meet the man of her dreams in prison. But he wasn't some rough and ready inmate. Quite the opposite: he was a clean-cut clergyman called Tom Hereward, who was helping attend to the locked-up women at the same time as Trixie. Although the hard-living Trixie was a bit uncertain about being courted by a man of the cloth, she was soon won over by his boyish charms. And despite their first date being gatecrashed by a bunch of rowdy Boy Scouts, things unfolded most romantically, and they were engaged to be married.

Helen George as Trixie Franklin, Miranda Hart as Chummy Browne, Jessica Raine as Jenny Lee and Bryony Hannah as Cynthia Miller.

Helen George as Trixie Franklin, Miranda Hart as Chummy Browne, Jessica Raine as Jenny Lee and Bryony Hannah as Cynthia Miller.

4. BUT IT DIDN'T GO WELL...

Sadly, that first flush of romance didn't lead to a happy ending for Trixie and her handsome vicar. It's not that Trixie didn't try. She did her best to mold herself into the unlikely form of the perfect clergyman's wife, but it all got too much to bear when she realised she wouldn't have a say in their future. When Tom was told he would be dispatched to take on a rocky parish in Newcastle, and she had to like it or lump it, Trixie decided - reluctantly - to lump it. "I can't live up to what you and the church expect of me," was her heartbreaking conclusion.

5. SHE'S HAD TROUBLE WITH BOOZE

Trixie's party animal side has always been a source of delight for all who've known her. But she crossed the fine line from loving booze to being addicted to booze, especially in the fallout of her fractured relationship with Tom. Luckily, Trixie bravely admitted she had a problem with her drinking, and attended Alcoholics Anonymous to overcome her addiction.

6. SHE'S A FITNESS TRAILBLAZER

Back in the 60s, the notion of exercise and "keeping fit" was hardly on most normal people's radars. But Trixie - energetic and rebellious as ever - was an early adopter. Determined to turn her life around after her alcoholic meltdown, she whipped on the black leotard and started taking - and then leading - keep fit classes, getting other Poplar ladies hooked on the new craze as well. She even got the attention of the local press, but the less said about the nuns' reaction to the risqué photographs, the better...