Sarah Lancashire on having ‘brain fog’ amid menopause

Sarah Lancashire has revealed she has “brain fog” due to the “most terrible” menopause.

The 58-year-old actress was given the special recognition gong at the National Television Awards (NTAs) last week for her body of work, including roles in Coronation Street, Last Tango In Halifax, and Happy Valley.

Lancashire told The Mail on Sunday: “I’m having the most terrible menopause. I’ve got brain fog.

“I was in Sainsbury’s the other day, and I found myself just stood there in the aisle and could not remember what I was there for. It just comes over you all of a sudden.

“I can’t remember things that happened 30 years ago either.”

Happy Valley screening
James Norton, Rhys Connah and Siobhan Finneran all starred in Happy Valley alongside Sarah Lancashire (Danny Lawson/PA)

Previous recipients of the special recognition award include Doctor Who’s David Tennant, comedian Sir Lenny Henry, and journalist David Dimbleby.

Lancashire also spoke of her struggles with the heat and needing two fans “pretty much on my face the whole time” at the awards ceremony.

“I brought one of my closest friends with me and his job was to keep an eye out for the cameras and if it looked like they were going to pan across to us, then he’d let me know so I could hide them,” she said.

At London’s O2 on Tuesday, she also won the award for best drama performance for her role as no-nonsense West Yorkshire police sergeant Catherine Cawood in gritty crime drama Happy Valley, which ended earlier this year after three seasons.

Both series one and two won Baftas for best drama series and writing, and earned Lancashire a leading actress award for the second series.

The show, which began in 2014, follows Catherine as she grieves for her daughter, Becky, who took her own life, and raises her grandson, Ryan, played by Rhys Connah, born as a result of Becky being raped by Tommy Lee Royce (James Norton), who becomes Catherine’s nemesis.