home and away - morag


Morag Bellingham

Is former district court judge Morag Bellingham a force for good or evil? Let's hear the evidence. The case for the prosecution runs as follows: she's got more bite than a school of piranhas, a tongue so sharp that it could carve a turkey in ten seconds flat, and cold, darting eyes that can probably fire laser beams when she gets particularly annoyed. In fact, when she was made, they'd probably run out of hearts and had to resort to using a lump of granite.

However, there's plenty to say in her defence. She's very protective of her brother Alf and his myriad long-lost offspring; she's devastatingly witty and could silence even Jade Goody with one of her well-turned phrases; and she flounces around Summer Bay - or Pro-Bono Bay as she likes to call it - dispensing free legal advice to any Tom, Dick or Harry that accidentally runs someone over. The fact that she doesn't seem to have had a love interest since Donald Fisher could explain why she's a bit on the bitter side.

So is she a goodie or a baddie? You lot can be the jury.

Morag Bellingham is played by Cornelia Frances

Cornelia Frances is the antipodean Anne Robinson, in a way, as she hosts Australia's version of The Weakest Link. She's a fine choice, too, as she's well seasoned at playing the bitch. She took the role of Morag like a duck to water after several years appearing as the dastardly Barbara Hamilton in now-defunct soap opera Sons and Daughters.

Born in Britain, Cornelia was educated at the Guildhall School of music and drama in London before she moved to Australia in the late 1960s. She soon found work as a cast member in such esteemed serials as The Box, The Young Doctors and - like any good Australian actress of a certain age - Prisoner: Cell Block H.

Cornelia lives in the Lower North Shore area of New South Wales. Her autobiography, And What Have You Done Lately?, was published in 2003.