13/03/2016 03:00 GMT | Updated 13/03/2017 05:12 GMT

Dynasty's Stephanie Beacham Tells Of Rape Attack Early In Career

Actress Stephanie Beacham has said she was raped at the start of her career and the incident "screwed up" her life.

The Dynasty star said she was assaulted in the early 1970s but the rapist was not a fellow actor.

She avoided rape several other times in her career but the damage caused meant she ended a relationship that could have turned into a marriage, she told the Sunday Telegraph.

Beacham, 69, made her film debut in 1971's The Nightcomers with Marlon Brando and also later starred in Dynasty spin-off The Colbys as glamorous Sable Colby.

Discussing how in her early career she had learned to avoid being touched up and carried a £5 note sewn into her coat as "getaway money", she said: "I can remember avoiding rape several times and a couple of times not."

After being questioned further about the date she added: "No, I will, for my own brain, be more specific and say once, and it was the very early seventies. And that is fact."

She refused to reveal the name of her attacker but said he was not a "theatrical person".

In 1973 Beacham married and had two daughters with actor and writer John McEnery, but they divorced six years later.

Last year she announced she was engaged to fiance Bernie Greenwood and recently starred in the BBC sitcom Boomers with Alison Steadman.

She said that being a rape victim had "screwed up" her life and ruined the relationship she was in at the time.

Due to feeling it was her fault, she could not admit what had happened, she said.

In controversial comments, she also discussed the idea that women could avoid being assaulted.

She said: "I don't think I'm quite politically correct for modern times, I just knew that as a certain point, I had to leave (a party) otherwise I would get into trouble and it would be my fault, not because I had asked for it but I could just see that there was almost a feeling that if you aroused a man it would be your fault."