In the TV movie Goldeneye: the Secret Life of Ian Fleming (1989), Marsha plays Loelia Ponsonby, a friend of Fleming's whose name he used for James Bond's first secretary, also called Loelia Ponsonby. The real Loelia later married the second Duke of Westminster, a distant cousin of Marsha's, while the fictional Loelia was also married off at the same time.
Marsha was Miss Marcia Fitzalan-Howard until 1975, when she was twenty-two. Her father, Major-General Fitzalan-Howard, then inherited the title of Duke of Norfolk from a distant cousin. Strictly speaking, this made his daughter Lady Marcia Fitzalan-Howard, but she was already an aspiring actress and decided to use the name Marsha Fitzalan instead.
In 2006, Rik Mayall and Marsha Fitzalan reprised their television roles as Alan B'stard MP and his wife Sarah in a touring stage production called The Blair B'Stard Project, bringing the B'stard saga bang up to date.
A skilled rider, Marsha doubled for one of the stars of the equestrian movie International Velvet (1978), and was credited as a crew member and not an actor.
Her first ever screen appearance was as a party guest in a 1975 episode of the television show Upstairs, Downstairs.
In the British movie Henry VIII (2003), Marsha played her direct ancestress the Duchess of Norfolk. The director, Peter Travis, commented - "There's nothing as good as the real thing."
Marsha's father the Duke of Norfolk owned several houses, and one of them was called Carlton Towers, near Goole in Yorkshire. The Duke allowed the house to be used to represent Hetton Abbey in a film called A Handful of Dust (1988), which Marsha was appearing in, and she then persuaded him to play a small part in the film, appearing as a gardener.
From her marriage (1977-1995) to the actor Patrick Ryecart, Marsha has three children, Mariella Celia (born 1982), Jemima Carrie (1984) and Frederick William Hamlet (1987).
She is a Roman Catholic.
Her brother Edward is now the 18th Duke of Norfolk.
When she was born, Marsha's father was a Colonel in the British Army, which is how she came to be born in West Germany. Her father later became a Major-General, before inheriting the title of Duke of Norfolk.
One of Marsha's sisters is Lady Carina Fitzalan-Howard, now married to the television presenter Sir David Frost.