Meeting Lady Edith, middle child and serial rebel of Downton Abbey’s aristocratic Crawley family, is a rather intimidating proposition. Laura Carmichael, the 33-year-old actress who has played Edith since 2010, has perfected both her patrician withering look and her cutting put-downs. The character has never been one to suffer fools gladly.
So it’s enormously calming when Carmichael bounds over, halfway through her intensive PHOENIX shoot, to say hello. “I love this stuff,” she says. “it’s so glam!”