Gold Logie winner Lorrae Desmond dies aged 91


Sad news for TV fans with the death of an icon

Lorrae with with original cast of A Country Practice (image – 7)

Gold Logie winner Lorrae Desmond has died aged 91 after a short battle with illness TV Blackbox has confirmed.

Her career spanned over 55 years but most Australians fondly remember her as Shirley in A Country Practice where she appeared 816 episodes from 1981 to 1992.

Born Beryl Hunt, Lorrae grew up in Mittagong NSW but moved to Britain with her family aged 10.

After forging a career in the United Kingdom during the ’50s she returned to Australia and quickly established herself as an entertainer to be reckoned with.

The versatile performer had her own musical variety program The Lorrae Desmond Show from 1960 until 1964. She also won the TV Week Gold Logie in 1962.

Lorrae Desmond touring Vietnam (image – Australian War Memorial)

Lorrae toured Vietnam during the conflict for which she was honoured with the MBE for services to entertainment.

Her many and varied appearances included programs such as s Homicide, Number 96 and Arcade in 1980,

Co-star Shane Withington tweeted:

Vale Lorrae Desmond. Enormous heart Enormous talent. We all loved her.

Wendy Strehlow, who played Judy Loveday alongside Lorrae, added:

Robert McKnight
"Leading TV commentator" - The Daily Telegraph | "Known for his impeccable sources in the TV industry" - The Daily Mail | "Always first with the correct info" - Beau Ryan | Robert McKnight is a highly regarded Australian Television Producer having worked at SEVEN, NINE and TEN during his 25 years in the industry. Publicly he is most well-known for creating and producing STUDIO 10 but has worked on SUNRISE, THE MORNING SHOW plus other prime time productions in addition to creating award-winning news campaigns for both 7NEWS and 9NEWS. Currently, Rob is the host and producer of the TV BLACKBOX, MCKNIGHT TONIGHT and MONSTERS WHO MURDER podcast, and executive producer of AFTERNOONS WITH SOFIE FORMICA on radio station 4BC


  1. Very sad news 😢
    this lady was awsome to watch growing up RIP⚘⚘⚘⚘
    Fairwell Loraine thanks for showing us kids how to be strong

  2. Robert writes “While forging a career she represented the United Kingdom in 1957 at the Eurovision Song Contest” … so you’re another one who got conned by using Wikipedia as your research source? No, she didn’t …

  3. Lorrae was a very close friend, I spoke with her a couple of days before she passed. My late husband worked with Lorrae on her television shows in 1960-1961. He was a musician with the ABC. I have a photo of them with the band at the Celebrity Club in 1951. So much history of a life well lived. I shall miss you Lorrae and thank you for your friendship over the years. x

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