Dating different social classes

She raises arched eyebrows above large blue eyes in a pretty, refined face at hearing how closely the characters in A Bit of Rough mirror herself and Laurence.But she is very clear that, within their partnership, the difference in class is a strength, and that they have achieved an emotional equality and closeness that is not the stuff of Fraser's play.

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On the whole, people do not marry out of their social class in Britain. From the glossy pages of Tatler and Harper's to the print-outs of computer dating firms, the emphasis is on like coupling with like.

Hence, when a duke marries a chorus girl, a debutante falls for a drains inspector, it hits the headlines.

"The indications for a cross-class relationship are not all that good, especially if the wife is higher class than the husband.

When it's the other way around, there seems to be less problem, with the wife moulding herself to fit into his world." But these relationships have a better chance of success when the couple share leisure activities and interests.

Yvonne explains: "I felt completely at ease with him and I felt more classy, more educated than him - my own working-class origins were thoroughly blurred by this time - and that was a relief after so often feeling inadequate before." But here, too, their differences got in the way and they separated.

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