Flashback: Noni Hazlehurst on ‘A Place to Call Home’ and the best thing about ageing

This long weekend, we’re revisiting one of our most popular video interviews in Starts at 60‘s 10+ year history.

Noni Hazlehurst has graced our screens for more than 40 years, from The Sullivans and The Shiralee to Play School and Better Homes & Gardens. She has also worked tirelessly on stage and radio and well as directing and writing plays.

Back in 2015, Starts at 60 caught up with Noni when she was in town for the launch of series three of A Place To Call Home. It was to be the first of many broad-sweeping conversations we’d share with the beloved screen icon over the years.

Noni, then 62, shared her favourite part of life over 60; one that resonated strongly with many of our readers.

“One of the few benefits of getting older is that you care less and less about what people think,” she said.

“That’s been something of a revelation to me. I wish someone had told me when I was 25 that I actually had the right to have thoughts and opinions and express them.”

“I know a lot more than I ever did. The great thing about it is that I’m not frightened any more of saying stuff. I do despair that anyone who dares put their head above the parapet gets shot down so virulently. I think we need to be able to share our options without being labelled 100 per cent wrong.”

“I’m also a better judge of character than I was. I’ve always been cynical, but I’m happy to be cynical now.”

She also shared some fond reflections of her time on Play School — her all-time favourite role — which you can hear below in another classic video from the Starts at 60 vault:

Noni shared further thoughts on ageing when she spoke to Starts at 60 again in 2018.

“I don’t buy the word ‘old’, really,” she said.

“It’s up to individuals to work out what they want to do and whether they can do it. Can they take steps to achieve it? If you can, that applies to any age, whether you’re 12 or 92, if you feel you can do something and you want to do it, then it’s up to you to find a way to do it.”

“Most people over 60 have worked out that it’s okay to be yourself,” she said. “You can’t compete in any other stakes, other than being the unique individual you are. You may as well just go for it.”

Read more: Noni Hazlehurst reveals her one personal regret

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