By Lucy Hunter Johnston
Cookham in Berkshire.
Where do you live in London?
Islington. I live with a flatmate and I want to get a rabbit and call him Gerald.
What advice would you give to a tourist?
Don’t stop walking suddenly on the Underground, someone will walk into you. It really annoys me.
What’s the first thing you do when you arrive back in town?
Wrap up warm, put on The Beatles’ Anthology and walk into Soho.
Which shops do you rely on?
Fopp for reasonably priced music. Rough Trade for vinyl. Bar Bruno in Wardour Street is the best old-school caff in London; I like to people-watch with a £1 cup of tea. Annie’s vintage clothing in Camden Passage, N1, is beautiful. I could eat everything off the menu at The Breakfast Club in Angel.
What’s the most romantic thing someone’s done for you?
Hold my hand while walking through the city, letting me show them all my favourite places while putting up with my jokes.
Who are your heroes?
George Harrison and my mum. When Harrison died I was on a school trip; I was inconsolable and my mum had to pick me up. The world is a more beautiful place because of both of them.
Which is your favourite club?
I adore The Lexington on Pentonville Road for music and table football.
How would you like the opening line of your obituary to read?
‘Her jokes were s*** but we laughed anyway.’
Which animal would you like to be?
A dog, so I could sit on a sofa and get constant attention.
What’s your earliest London memory?
My parents would slow down as we drove past Harrods so I could stare at the displays. For years I didn’t realise it was a shop, I thought it just had nice windows.
What’s the best meal you’ve had?
I had the most amazing steak at The Wolseley recently. It was made even more exquisite by the company. I might have been with my boyfriend…
Do you have a recurring dream?
I used to dream that I was being chased and ran so fast I took off and no one could catch me.
Tell me something I don’t know about London…
There are seven noses in Soho; if you find all seven, it means infinite wealth. So far I’ve only tracked down two.
What do you most like wearing?
A skirt, shirt and brogues.
What’s your biggest extravagance?
Each time I finish a job, I buy a ring. By the end of my career I’ll be weighed down with hundreds if I’m lucky.
If you could live in any building, which would it be?
I studied at Central Saint Martins. The old building on Charing Cross Road is empty now. It should be full of artists, so I’d live there with my friends.
What would you do if you were Mayor for the day?
I’d play music on every street and give everyone free tea. You can’t be in a bad mood with tea and good music.
What was the last play you saw?
Ian Rickson’s Hamlet, with Michael Sheen. It really stays with you.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
The director Niall MacCormick said, ‘No one knows what they’re doing, we’re all just making it up as we go along. It’s OK not to know; that’s the fun of it.’
What was the last album you bought?
The Tallest Man on Earth’s latest.
What are you up to at the moment?
Eagerly awaiting the scripts for the third series of Downton. I’d like my on-screen sister Edith to find love.
Which is your favourite London shop?
I have a weakness for Liberty. It’s something both my mum and my bank balance would prefer me to curb.
What are your best London discoveries?
The people that I’ve met. In the countryside I never quite felt I’d found people I fit in with. Then you come to a city like London and find people just like you. That’s special.
Where did you last go on holiday?
I had a day’s holiday in Brighton recently. We ate fish and chips and I lost money in the arcades. I’m desperate to go to Cuba before it all changes.
The third series of Downton Abbey will be out later this year. Albatross is out on DVD on Monday