Hannah Waterman

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Hannah Waterman
Hannah Elizabeth Waterman

(1975-07-22) 22 July 1975 (age 48)
London, England
Other namesHannah Mary Groves
Years active1997–present
  • (m. 2006; div. 2014)
  • (m. 2022)

Hannah Elizabeth Waterman[1] (born 22 July 1975) is an English actress. She is best known for her portrayal of Laura Beale in the BBC soap opera EastEnders (2000–2004).

Early life[edit]

Waterman was born on 22 July 1975 in London to actor Dennis Waterman and actress Patricia Maynard.[2][3] She attended Norwich High School for Girls and Saint Felix School, Southwold and Putney High School. She is also a graduate of the University of Warwick.



Waterman joined the cast of BBC soap opera EastEnders as Laura Dunn in February 2000. Waterman previously appeared in the soap as an HIV patient in 1997. The character of Laura became the third wife of Ian Beale (Adam Woodyatt), but the marriage was not a happy one as the paternity of Laura's son Bobby was disputed. The character was killed off on 30 April 2004, after falling down the stairs in her flat after tripping over a toy when going to answer the door. Janine Evans (Charlie Brooks) was wrongly accused of murdering her after a receipt was found in Laura's flat following a bust-up. Waterman's mother Patricia Maynard played Laura's mother in EastEnders for a couple of episodes in 2001, and her one-time step mother Rula Lenska had also made a guest appearance in the series during Laura's run playing Frank Butcher's girlfriend in the Spain episodes in 2002.

Other work[edit]

Since her departure from EastEnders, Waterman has appeared in episodes of the BBC medical dramas Doctors and Holby City, The Bill and a recurring role in New Tricks, which also starred her father.

On stage she has appeared in The Vagina Monologues, Soap at The Stephen Joseph theatre and Tom, Dick and Harry and Calendar Girls in the West End.

On 7 January 2007, she won the second series of the BBC's Just the Two of Us game show singing with Marti Pellow.[4]

She has been seen in an episode of the Afternoon Play series on BBC1, in an acclaimed run of Alan Ayckbourn's Round and Round the Garden at the Theatre Royal, Windsor and as a contestant on Sky One's Cirque de Celebrité.

In 2009, she released an exercise DVD called Hannah Waterman's Body Blitz.

On 22 December 2009, she appeared on Channel 4 in a Christmas special edition of Come Dine with Me alongside David Gest, Diarmuid Gavin and Sherrie Hewson.[5]

In 2010, she toured alongside Brigit Forsyth in a production of Carrie's War playing the part of Auntie Lou.

In 2013, she toured in Lindsay Posner's production of Abigail's Party playing the lead role of Beverly Moss.[6][7]

Personal life[edit]

Waterman married fellow EastEnders actor Ricky Groves in 2006. They separated in 2010 and divorced in 2014.[8] Waterman has been in a relationship with Huw Higginson since 2010. They have a son, born 2011.[9] They relocated to Australia in 2014 and married on 11 October 2022.[10]


Year Title Role Note
1997 EastEnders Maria 1 episode
1997 Dangerfield Maura Puller Episode "Inappropriate Adults"
1998 Casualty Maria Episode "Honey Bunny"
1998 Supply & Demand Waitress Episode "Blood Ties: Part 2"
1998 Trial & Retribution Nurse Episode #2.1
1999 Big Bad World Country Supermarket Check-Out Girl Episode "Don't Shoot the Cows"
2000 Peak Practice Mel Episode "Family Values"
2000–2004 EastEnders Laura Beale 346 episodes
2006 Doctors Maria Thomas Episode "Keys to the Heart"
2006 The Bill Fern Parker 4 episodes
2006–2010 New Tricks Emily Driscoll 7 episodes
2007 The Afternoon Play Kate Episode "Come Fly with Me"
2012 Holby City Ruby Macintosh Episode "Half a Person"
2012–2013 Doctors DI Collier 8 episodes
2022 Bali 2002 Rosemary Miller 1 episode "Restoring The Balance"
Year Title Role Note
1997 The Missing Postman Girl in Cafe
1998 Tess of the D'Urbervilles Nancy
2000 Trust Legal Secretary
2009 To Cancer and Beyond Angela Finn Atkins
2011 Patient 17 Sarah Benedict
Year Play
2005–2006 Tom, Dick and Harry
2009 Rattle of a Simple Man
2009–2010 Calendar Girls
2010 Carrie's War
2011 Survive!
Killing Time
The Vagina Monologues


  1. ^ "MS HANNAH ELIZABETH WATERMAN director information. Free director information. Director id 912332555". Company Check.
  2. ^ "Hannah Waterman denies weight loss ended marriage to Ricky Groves". Daily Mirror. 7 January 2010. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  3. ^ "Theatre: New mum Hannah Waterman takes to the stage". Birmingham Mail. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  4. ^ "Hannah Waterman and Marti Pellow win Just The Two Of Us 2007". BBC (Press release).
  5. ^ "Hannah Waterman to star in Celebrity Come Dine With Me". CoventryLive. 21 December 2009.
  6. ^ "70s classic: Hannah Waterman stars in Abigail's Party at Lighthouse". Bournemouth Echo. 4 March 2013.
  7. ^ "My Life: Hannah Waterman". yorkshirepost.co.uk. 9 May 2013.
  8. ^ "Hannah Waterman and Ricky Groves' sour split as she ditched him after slim-down". World News Era. 2 September 2020.
  9. ^ "Ex Eastenders star Hannah Waterman gives birth to Bill actor's baby". MadeForMums.
  10. ^ Hannah Waterman is married! Actress ties the knot with The Bill star Huw Higginson in Australia nybreaking, 12 October 2022. Retrieved 12 October 2022

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]