- Her grandfather was a Member of Parliament and was awarded a hereditary baronetcy; her father and mother were both titled.
- At age 8, boarded at the Arts Educational School in Tring Park to do ballet, drama and music; originally wanted to be a ballet dancer but soon realised she was better at acting.
- Her breakout role was as DS Jane Penhaligon in Cracker from 1993 to 1995; her co-star Robbie Coltrane's funny stories often made her corpse during filming.
- In 2003, played Henriette d'Angleterre in Lindsay Posner's staging of Power at the National Theatre, London.
- Was offered the role of Lily Potter in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone after JK Rowling turned it down; went on to appear in every film of the franchise.