image/svg+xml Discover Menu


Behind the scenes: Madam Pomfrey

The no-nonsense Hogwarts nurse cured all manner of magical ailments in the books. Here's how she was brought to life in the films.

Ron in the Hospital Wing from the Half-Blood Prince.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Extracted from Harry Potter: The Character Vault by Jody Revenson

Madam Poppy Pomfrey, first seen in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, is a character that actress Gemma Jones finds ‘clearly identifiable. I’ve got lots of fun fan mail from young people who obviously recognise the character that they’ve read in the books.’ It’s not surprising that an educational institution such as Hogwarts should have its own version of the ‘school nurse,’ in this case a matron, and costumer Judianna Makovsky ensured that Madam Pomfrey had her own distinguishable robes. Keeping to the overall choice of a Dickensian-era familiarity for the wizarding wardrobes, Pomfrey wears a uniform that resembles those of the women educated at the Nightingale Training School, established in England in the 1860s. The high starched collar, peaked hat, and long dress/apron combination was believed to be the most protective outfit to wear against disease. Madam Pomfrey’s costume includes the nurse’s standard equipment of a timepiece, and she wears a pin in the shape of an hourglass.

Madam Pomfrey tends to Harry with Skele-Gro after Lockhart removes all the bones in Harry's arm
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Madam Pomfrey’s uniform was revised for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Jany Temime kept Pomfrey in a similar colour theme — the white and red originated by the American Red Cross brought over the Atlantic by World War I nurses—but gave the outfit more wizardy points. The sleeves are puffed up and the collar comes down in sharp-ending triangles. Temime also provided her with a red-coloured cape/cloak combo for outdoor scenes.

Harry Potter: The Character Vault book cover

Extracted from
'Harry Potter: The Character Vault'