Emmerdale Past & Present Wiki

Edna Birch.

Edna Birch (Nee Burrows) was a long running character in Emmerdale. She first appeared in Episode 2697 (24th May 2000) although she had lived in the village for most of her life beforehand apart from a few years as a married woman. She has a fiery temper but a good heart and is an Annie Sugden type matriarch of the village. She is now retired and lives at Woodbine Cottage with her pet dog Tootsie. Edna was played by actress Shirley Stelfox. In December 2015, Shirley Stelfox died after a short illness. She had already filmed her last scenes as Edna even though she hoped to return to the show once she was better. In Episode 7492 (3rd May 2016) Edna died off-screen after a battle with ovarian cancer.


Edna Burrows was born on the 21st April 1937 to Ernest Burrows and his wife. She had a sister Lily Burrows born in 1946. Edna grew up in Beckindale village and knew of Amos Brearly and Annie Sugden. Edna married a man called Harold Birch in the 1960s, but Harold was secretly gay and in love with his friend Lawrence White. At the same time, Edna adopted her nephew Peter Birch, the son of her sister Lily Butterfield.


Edna Birch had been a villager for many years by 2000. She was disgusted at Reverand Ashley Thomas for dating Bernice Blackstock. Edna upheld morals in the village.

Memorable info[]

Born: 2nd April 1937

Died: 3rd May 2016 (Aged 79)

Full Name: Edna Birch (Nee Burrows)


Father Ernest Burrows

Siblings Lily Butterfield

Spouse Harold Birch

Great nieces Eve Jensen

First cousins Mildred Finch

Second cousins once removed Harriet Finch