Call the Midwife Wiki

Brenda McEntee was a minor character who was featured in Series 1, Episode 2. She is portrayed by Penny Layden. Brenda was the first pregnant woman Camilla Noakes interacted with, where she showed how compassionate and how fine of a nurse she is.


As a child, Brenda was deprived of sunlight and was malnourished, causing her to develop rickets - skeletal malformations in her legs and a rachitic pelvis, which caused her to be unable to give birth naturally. Brenda has to walk with braces on her legs and a walker. When Brenda married, she became pregnant four times, only to lose every child in childbirth. Due to the time, when healthcare was not free, Brenda was unable to prevent her children's deaths, causing her much emotional trauma that still haunts her. During World War II, Brenda lost her first husband in the Blitz, when the sugar works caught fire. She remarried in 1956.

In 1958, Brenda found herself pregnant again, although she was well into her 40s.

Brenda is first seen in the antenatal clinic waiting to be seen by Dr. Turner. Her friend, Betty, another older pregnant woman, arrives and jokes that she "never thought [she'd] be seein' you here". Brenda takes the joke in stride, and tells Betty she's remarried. The two women are then contrasted quite clearly, as Betty relays that she has other children (a son and a daughter about to be married) and was actually a bit "disgusted" to find herself pregnant again. Betty and Brenda appear to be good friends, and when Brenda is called, Betty wishes her luck.

Dr. Turner and Chummy examine Brenda, and the doctor explains to the nurse about Brenda's condition, and how her other babies died due to obstructed labour. As the doctor casually explains the situation, Brenda breaks into tears. Although Dr. Turner tries to comfort her, Brenda says she's been trying to be brave, but earlier in the week, she felt her baby move, "like the others moved, and I lost every one of them". The doctor once again assures her that, due to the National Health Service, Brenda can have a free caesarean section when the time comes, and uncomfortably turns away. Chummy holds Brenda's hand, gives her a handkerchief, and comforts her by saying "this is a brand new baby, and a splendid chance for you". She assures Brenda that they're all going to help her have a healthy baby, and Brenda calms down, shamefully saying she's making a fool of herself. Chummy assures her that she isn't and they continue her exam.

Later, Dr. Turner compliments Chummy's ability to make Brenda feel safe, saying she has the makings to a great nurse. Although Chummy tries to brush off the compliments, they help her grow more confident.

Brenda eventually gave birth to a daughter by C-section. In voice-over, Jenny relays that "the National Health gave her the gift of motherhood. She called her child "Grace Miracle". And she was perfect". The last we see of Brenda is her smiling down at her daughter in the clinic while the nurses weigh her.