Winifred "Freda" Dudley Ward (28 July, 1894 – 16 March, 1983), born Winifred May Birkin, was an English socialite best known for being a mistress of the Prince of Wales.
Freda Dudley Ward was the second child in her family and the eldest of three sisters. Her paternal grandfather, Sir Thomas Birkin, was a textile magnate.
She married William Dudley Ward in 1913. Though Ward was his family surname, Dudley Ward officially became their surname through common usage.
She meets Rose MacClare in 1923. After a discussion between them involving the prince, Terence Sampson steals a letter from the prince to Mrs Dudley Ward from her handbag. When Mrs Dudley Ward finds out that the letter is gone, she goes to Rose asking for help.
Lord Grantham is upset with this theft, but resolves to preserve the monarchy's good name. Eventually the letter is retrieved.
Mrs Dudley Ward appears to have some sort of relationship with Charles Blake, to whom she talks during a ball at Grantham House, regarding his feelings for Mary Crawley. He even refers to her by her first name.
Behind the scenes
- Like the Crawley sisters, Freda Dudley Ward is the daughter of an English father and an American mother.
- Mrs Dudley Ward's grand-daughter Tracy was the first wife of actor Edward Fox, the elder brother of James Fox, who portrays Lord Aysgarth.
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