Merrall"s stage career started in her teens and for the rest of her life she remained a well-known and respected stage actress. Although she was based in London, she often appeared in other prestigious venues in the United Kingdom such as the Birmingham Repertory Theatre and the Theatre Royal, Glasgow. Among her most famous stage roles were Lady Macbeth in a controversial but influential 1928 modern-dress production by Barry Jackson which opened in Birmingham before transferring to London"s Royal Court Theatre, and Mistress
Danvers in Daphne du Maurier"s Rebecca at the Strand Theatre in 1940.
Her stage career also took her to the United States, where she appeared in Canaries Sometimes Sing (Frederick Lonsdale) in New York and Chicago in 1930. Merrall married three times.
Her first marriage to J.B. Hissey in 1909 ended acrimoniously in 1914 amid a great deal of public and media interest, after Hissey brought a highly-publicised divorce suit alleging infidelity on Merrall"s part, naming several men including famous music hall star Albert Whelan. Merrall"s second marriage, to noted Shakespearean actor Ion Swinley, was also dissolved in 1927.
Her third marriage, to fellow actor Franklin Dyall, lasted until Dyall"s death in 1950.
Merrall died in London on 31 August 1973, aged 83.