Rula Lenska warned Maureen Lipman about ‘end of friendship’ if she didn’t do DNA journey

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ITV’s heartwarming show, DNA Journey, sees pairs of famous faces find out the backstory to their family history. Actress Dame Maureen Lipman and Rula Lenksa met on the set of Coronation Street and came together to embark on a journey to uncover their family history. Whilst speaking to Claudia Winkleman on Radio 2, Rula revealed she gave Maureen a stern warning their friendship would “end” if she didn’t do the show with her.

After introducing the pair to the show, Claudia said: “This DNA journey, you two haven’t seen it, I have, it’s beautifully done.

“It is incredibly moving without it being sentimental, did you enjoy taking part?”

Maureen began: “We had a wonderful week, we absolutely thought it was one of the best jobs we have ever done.

“I didn’t want to go because I knew she was a Countess, and I knew that they would gravel me about and that she would be in some castle with spires.

“So I was really against it, but actually it revealed a lot to me that I didn’t know, nobody ever talked about it in my family.

“This is the generation where you forget the past, look at the survivors they didn’t speak for 50 years.”

Rula interrupted: “Maureen didn’t want to go at all, she is not a great traveller, and I kept saying to her ‘Listen, this will be the end of a beautiful friendship if you don’t come.’

“So in the end, she was persuaded, and as you said, it was the best telly job I have ever done, and it was such joy!”

Speaking about some of the antics they got up to during their trip, Maureen said: “I have to say she got very Polish, I get very, very bored in the car of her and the driver singing Polish songs.”

Defending her singing, Rula interjected: “Oh come on, you sang Happy Birthday in Polish to Bill Roache!”

“Why did I do that?” Maureen asked, to which Rula quipped back: “I don’t know, but it was funny.”

Claudia touched on the fact they were an odd pairing, one which many didn’t see coming.

Maureen joked: “She was desperate, I came along and took pity on her, a lot of being said, ‘Oh befriend her for us.'”

But Rula was eager to praise their friendship as she admitted: “At this age, it is unusual to meet a soulmate.”

Rula’s family are Polish aristocracy, while Maureen’s are tradesmen from Hull, which made their pairing unique.

As the pair went about their journey, some gobsmacking revelations were waiting for them in Poland as Maureen is blown away by her unknown connection to Rula’s homeland.

The unlikely duo find their friendship isn’t so surprising after all, and when they look back into the past, it’s almost as if they were destined to be friends in the future.

Rula and Maureen were recently on The One Show discussing their episode, and they detailed what it was like to live together.

Presenter Alex Jones asked: “Come on, Maureen, you tell us, what was Rula like to live with?”

Maureen detailed: “Because I came to Manchester with a lemon squeezer, that’s it, and some shoes, and Rula, was in her flat with gauze that covered the lampshades, rugs, pillows that were stuffed with lavender, she brought curtains, everything.

“We had to move her into the flat with a porter’s trolly,” she teased.

DNA Journey continues Tuesday, April 12 at 9pm on ITV.

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