Dame Helen Mirren is grateful for the coronavirus lockdown because it has given her a "normal" life with her husband.

Taylor Hackford and Helen Mirren

Taylor Hackford and Helen Mirren

The 75-year-old actress has spent far more time with her spouse, director Taylor Hackford, at their home in Lake Tahoe than ever before in their three decades of marriage because of the restrictions introduced to stop the spread of COVID-19.

And Helen says that extra time together and brought her and Taylor, 76, even closer together.

In an interview with The Telegraph's Stella magazine, she said: “My husband and I have been married for 30-something years, you know, a very long time. But in all that time because of the nature of both of our work we’ve always been looking at suitcases, at packing.

“The suitcases are always on the floor ready to be packed or unpacked. We have literally never spent this amount of time together.

“[The year] could have been disastrous but has actually been fantastic.

“It’s been really great to just sort of have what most people have. You know, normal, regular, repetitive lives, but comfortable lives. So it’s been a wonderful way for the two of us to bond, in a weird way. I think it’s been a very bonding experience.”

Although the ‘Red star has enjoyed much of her time at home, she admits it has been “upsetting” to see the effects of the pandemic on London’s theatre industry, though she’s confident it will bounce back when restrictions are lifted.

She said: “It’s the live performers, the ballet dancers, the singers – all of that world that is such a wonderful part of London has been so devastated. But it will come back with a vengeance I believe. People will be so ready for it.”

And Helen also thinks the year has highlighted how women are still regarded as homemakers in the family.

The L’Oreal Paris spokeswoman reflected: “The progress of women has moved on immeasurably over the past 50 years.

“But in the last year, so much has fallen on women’s shoulders such as homeschooling, as well as cooking and cleaning. It is better than it was, but unfortunately women are still bearing the brunt, that’s how it still shakes down.

“So I suspect we’ll still need to say ‘We’re worth it’ for another 50 years to come.”