Call the Midwife Wiki

Marlene Dooley (née Buckle) is the daughter of Fred Buckle. Fred was engaged to be married to Violet Gee, but Marlene had no wish for the wedding to go ahead. She was played by Rosie Sanson.


Pre Series[]

Marlene was born and raised in Poplar, London with her parents Fred and Betty and her sister Dolly. When she was a little girl the second world war broke out and her father went away to war, fighting in Egypt in El Alamein. Marlene, her mother and sister remained in Poplar but they were far from safe, the East End of London was the biggest target for the Luftwaffe the blitz from 1940 to 1941 in which bombing where so bad rubble was piled there decades afterwards. During an air raid Marlene’s mother Betty was killed, she and Dolly were pulled out of the house in their nighties. Marlene hoped to find souvenirs with her Auntie Peg but she found the house had already been bulldozed.

Dolly and Marlene were shuffled around from relative to relative until their father came home from war and moved into a flat together. While her mother never lived in the flat she saw it as the place her family came together again and for that reason saw it as their family home. Dolly went on to marry a merchant sailor and had two children Anthony and Samantha, later moving with her family to Australia. Marlene on the other hand married a man called Dooley and had one child as Fred said his children have three nippers between them. She lived in Canada for a while before returning to Britain and settling in Birmingham.

Series 4[]

She found out her father was engaged to be married to Violet Gee and she came to Poplar to see her dad. She greeted people as she walked through the street and hugged her dad as she saw him, when he asked about his lady friend her expression changed and was not happy with the engagement, they sat down to tea with no sugar as she was sweet enough. Marlene was very surprised when Fred told her that he had handed notice on the flat and was going to live with Violet when married, expecting her to live with him.

She decides to pay a visit to Violet in her shop, Violet remembers her but Marlene makes no attempt to be nice. Violet remembers Dolly getting blue ribbons and Marlene yellow, Marlene lights a cigarette despite Violet saying she doesn’t like smoking in the shop. Marlene makes Violet think Fred is only marrying her for her business and pretended he called it a “proper little gold mine”. She then walks out of the shop before saying it was her that had the blue ribbons, sky blue like her mothers eyes. Violet decides to meet with Fred and it with him, Fred is devastated and Marlene makes him bacon, clearly satisfied with her work.

Nurse Chummy Noakes notices how upset Fred is who had been neglecting his work and staying in his flat. Marlene goes to stay with her friend Norah saying she was fed up of looking at his long face but came around every day just to make sure the flat was still standing, Fred thinking she was fixated with the place. Chummy calls Marlene round to discuss why she ruined her father’s engagement, Fred even pointing out her mother never lived in the flat, she tearfully says every time she returned to Poplar there was a gap where something else used to be, and that it seemed like only the river stayed the same.

Marlene decides she was being selfish and wrong and tells Violet just that, she says how angry her mother would be with her if she knew she tried to stop her father being happy and encouraged Violet to talk to Fred. The wedding was back on and she and Violet tried on hats, Marlene says hers is a bit plain so Violet gives her a ribbon sky blue like her mothers eyes. Marlene attends the wedding of her father and new stepmother.