DOB: 21 April 1937
Marital Status: Widowed
Address: Woodbine Cottage
Occupation: Volunteer at the Church
The village busy-body, Edna arrived on 25 May, 2000, mounting a campaign to end Reverend Ashley’s relationship with “strumpet” Bernice.
Strong-minded and sharp-tongued, Edna Birch lives alone with her dog Tootsie. But while she might have a vicious temper, she also has a good heart.
Edna became very close to good friend Pearl Ladderbank's husband, Len Reynolds and although she would never betray her friend, When Len died in 2007, Edna was devastated.
There was another big shock for the village when Edna’s son Peter arrived. It turned out that Edna wasn’t Peter’s real mum at all, and that the baby she’d brought up as her own belonged to her sister Lily. This was a massive shock for Edna and led to her confessing that her husband had been gay.
While looking through some files on the computer at Home Farm, Edna discovered that the Kings had forged a report that cleared them of negligence in the house collapse case. Believing Tom to be unaware of it, Edna was horrified when her boss turned on her and tried to blackmail her to keep quiet. In a cruel move, Tom even brought back Peter to Emmerdale, making it clear he would reveal the truth about his parentage if Edna told anyone about the report. Edna made the bravest move and revealed all to Peter. He went crazy and left Emmerdale in a rage.
Edna’s closest companions have been her beloved dogs, Batley and Tootsie.
She enjoyed the company of her sister Lily, who also lived in the village for a while, and her grand-daughter Eve, but the pair have since left Emmerdale.
Shirley Stelfox is an established TV actress who has appeared on shows including Coronation Street, Brookside, The Bill, Casualty, Keeping Up Appearances, EastEnders, Crossroads, Z Cars and Grange Hill. She also appeared in the 1971 film, Carry on at your Convenience.