Gleefully outspoken and bursting with hilarious anecdotes, Miriam Margolyes is gloriously larger than life. As her memoir is published, she tells Eva Wiseman about settling scores, her one regret and why for her nothing is taboo

Money and sex and religion and politics. That’s what people should be talking about,” says Miriam Margolyes from the shaded bench in her garden, where her dahlias and long grasses swoon gently in the heat. “And yet… they never do.”

Except here, of course, in south London, with cold water and coffee, and a cameo from a handsome gardener (“Marcos, do up your flies, there’s a young lady here from the Observer”) and Margolyes asking as many questions as she answers. “Is that your natural hair colour?” “Do you support a football team?” “Where did your ancestors come from?” I pity every poor person who is not me right now, drinking in the glory of Margolyes at 80, with 10 opinions for every year gone and a few left over for pudding.

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