News: William Nicholson

News from Philippa at Brighton Equity October 2021 meeting
Delighted to have had a front row seat at our honorary President William Nicholson’s presentation today!
William is a screenwriter, playwright and novelist – writer of Gladiator, Les Miserables, Shadowlands and First Knight among many others.

He was speaking at the first in-person (with some Zoom attendees) Brighton Equity meeting since lockdown began.

Topics included the business of working with actors, how to get into screenwriting if you’re a new voice and some hilarious anecdotes about some very well known names.
His current film stars Viggo Mortensen and Colin Farrell and is about the rescue of a group of children from caves in Thailand by two British amateur divers.

A great return to meeting together again.

Sussex Playwrights Christmas 2017 party and meeting

About the 2017 Christmas Party meeting

Thank you to all our members, visitors and guests for coming to our traditional Sussex Playwrights Christmas party on December the 3rd at the New Venture Theatre, where we’ve been meeting for about half a century (of course, Sussex Playwrights itself has been going for well over 80 years!)

This was a special Christmas ghost storytelling theme event, with wine, nibbles, readings, spooky tales and live music throughout the evening.

Previous parties have seen readings from ‘The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe’, ‘A Christmas Carol’ and ‘The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,’ John Julius Norwich’s ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas,’ plus performed script readings of ‘The Christmas Goat’ by Judy Upton and ‘The Toad on the Road’ by Thomas Everchild.

Cherie Cherchie read her short story ‘The Telephone Call’

Robert Cohen read his short story ‘Yarmouth Road’

Thomas Everchild told his spooky tale of ‘The Haunted Coat’

Jo Crocker read ‘Love Auntie Alice’ by Judy Upton

The traditional fiendish quiz presented by Thomas:

  • Third prize John Dutton £5 book token
  • Second prize Simon Moorhead £10 book token
  • And first prize winner Robert Cohen £15 book token

John Dutton read his short story ‘HMS Mosquito’

Apologies from Philippa, prevented from performing her short story ‘Night Watch’ by the great 2017 Brighton Cold! Hoping to do it at a future meeting.

Singer/guitarist Jo Crocker completed the evening by singing Playwriter, words by Thomas Everchild to the theme from Moonraker (music by John Barry, original lyrics by Hal David.) Click here to play

Next meeting: January 7th 7pm – 9pm

2017 meeting review: May

Introducing the June meeting and reviewing the May meeting

Sussex Playwrights Newsletter
June meeting and May report

Networking, news and great conversation for writers of new stage, screen, radio and online drama, actors and anyone who loves to read, hear and talk about new writing.

From the Chair

We hope you’re enjoying this lovely May – here in Brighton, the 2017 Brighton Festival / Fringe is very nearly at an end. This year, quite a few Committee members, SP members and friends have been deeply involved in Fringe productions, including:

Protect and Survive
Produced by Simon Moorhead, TBC Audio [committee member]
Written by Jonathan Williamson
Directed by Thomas Everchild [secretary]
Featuring Philippa Hammond [chair]
**** – Fringe Guru / ‘Recommended’ – Fringe Review

Happily Never After
The Maydays, Featuring Jenny Rowe [committee member]
***** – Broadway Baby

When Love Grows Old
Written by Giles Cole [twice winner of the Constance Cox competition]
*** – Fringe Guru / ‘Highly Recommended’ – Fringe Review

Sussex Playwrights Reviews

We’ve also started to publish our own reviews of productions – you can see some of our Fringe reviews here:

We’ll be bringing you more reviews of new theatre, audio and film drama in future. If you’d like us to review your upcoming production in Brighton, Hove or the surrounding area, please contact us with details and we can discuss.


4th June Meeting

New Venture Theatre Bar 7.30

2016-17 Constance Cox playwriting competition event

Plus networking, members’ and friends’ news and Fringe roundup

Now the Fringe is nearly over, we’re turning our attention back to the 2016-17 Constance Cox playwriting competition:

We published our long list of twelve plays on the website a couple of months ago:

Once in a Lifetime
Out of Darkness
Pass Words
Rock and Chips
Storm in a League Cup
The Other Apprentice
The Teaswell Incident
The Woman in Black II

June’s meeting will feature the Constance Cox competition First Three Pages live event.

Those first few pages of any script are a vital hook to the reader.

Do they capture attention, keep interest and spark the desire to read on?

At Sunday’s meeting we’ll be presenting some live First Three Pages readings from the twelve long listed plays for discussion and feedback.

Please do come along and join in on Sunday – your comments on the night will form part of the final decision-making process.

All welcome – Free to members, £2 to visitors on the night [including discussion and drinks]

Entries are also being read by professional audio drama producer, Simon Moorhead.

We’ll bring you news as soon as the winners are decided.

The organisers reserve the right to withdraw or add further prizes at their discretion.

For your diary

Shooters in the Pub – free monthly film makers’ networking event [screenwriters, producers, directors, actors and crew in conversation] on Monday June 5th 7.30 Duke’s at Komedia bar

May meeting report – Special guest William Nicholson

A-list screenwriter, playwright and novelist [Gladiator, Shadowlands, Les Miserables]
Report by Simon Jenner here:

Follow and share

In addition to the newsletter you can follow us on Social Media for up-to-date information, writing opportunities, news and announcements.

If you can’t come along to the June meeting to talk about your latest news, please email it to us to be included on social media, in meeting announcements and the next newsletter.

‘Like’ the Sussex Playwrights Facebook Page for the latest news and links

Follow us on Twitter @PlaywrightsClub

Work in progress or for sharing

We’re looking to members and guests to take an active part in future meetings and showcase their work.

  • If you’d like to read or perform an excerpt from your latest fiction or non fiction at a future meeting for discussion [10 minute slots]
  • If you’d prefer to have us arrange for someone to read it for you, if you’re happier writing than speaking [10 minute slots]
  • If you’d like to have actors read an excerpt from your latest script in progress for discussion [10 minute slots]
  • If you’re an actor who’d like to read
  • If you have a longer script you’d like considered for rehearsed reading / discussion

Please contact us

See you there!

Philippa Hammond [Chair], Thomas Everchild [Secretary] and the committee


2017 April AGM and meeting report

April AGM minutes plus meeting news and performance review

Sussex Playwrights 82nd AGM April 2017

Sussex Playwrights 2017 AGM Minutes and April meeting report

Chair and Secretary’s joint report
Philippa Hammond and Thomas Everchild

An interesting year, beginning with a proposal at the 2016 AGM to wind the club up – which happily did not happen.

We relaunched in June 2016 with a mixture of our traditional activities and new events. We welcomed 7 new members and featured performances and rehearsed readings of new work and work in progress. Our Christmas party featured a fiendish quiz by Thomas.

The Constance Cox prize playwriting competition attracted 48 entries. The reading team has produced a longlist, are currently working on the shortlist and will then announce the winners. A few did not meet the brief or were not up to standard, others were judged as good writing, with 12 plays going through to the longlist.

New events included a talk by Thomas on the Self Publishing Writer – insights on how to publish your own work, which several members have done. Philippa also held a First Five Pages workshop, featuring scripts from the previous year’s competition discussed for initial impressions.

Interviews and performances included a presentation from Guy Wah and Sarah Johnson of Hove Grown, the TV screenwriter James Payne, Simon Moorhead [producer TBC Audio] and actor/writer Rose Collis. Doug Devaney and Ross Gurney-Randall presented an excerpt from their Fringe show Ross and Doug Present Scenes From The Life And Death Of Lord Haw Haw, Britain’s Most Patriotic Traitor after the AGM.

Thomas has designed and launched the new website this year:

He explained that it is based on the WordPress blog/journal system, and is quick and easy to update on mobile phone. All entries have their own page so can be linked on Twitter and Facebook. An increasing number of people are coming to us from the Facebook page [286] and Twitter [899]. We’re catching up with the NVT. Over the next few months the site will have a history of the group from 1938 onwards, plus we’ll be experimenting with podcasts.

We’ve extended our reach, and have networked with groups abroad through Twitter and Facebook.

We’re also looking at print on demand services which will allow you to buy tshirts and mugs with the SPC logo.

For next year’s Constance Cox competition, we’re considering a short play competition with performances in next year’s festival as part of the prize. Entry is still free to members, and we will look at making the entry charge for non members the current membership fee, to attract new members.

We’ve been busy networking. After Guy and Sarah’s presentation, we found that some 11 shows in March 2017’s Hove Grown festival had direct contacts with Sussex Playwrights, and we’re looking to keep our good relationship with them into 2018 and beyond. Congratulations everyone who took part in Hove Grown.

We’ve made connections with Simon Moorhead and TBC Audio – several writer and actor members of SPC collaborated with Simon on projects over the last year.

Thomas and Philippa own Brighton Actors Networking Facebook Group and Page [some 1700 members]. We’re advertising for readers through the group, to attract a wider spread of readers. We’ll be reading the winning CC competition scripts and others too, with the winners recorded with actors in a recording studio and available online.

Simon Jenner asked if the £12 membership is correct for new members – yes. We have had special offers over the last few years, and current members are not being charged at the moment.

He also noted the old website is still online and asked if we are looking to upload old archives. Philippa and Thomas advised that this is ongoing – it takes a long time but they are preserved and will be transferred when possible to the new site.

If you have any ideas for events you’d like to see, or any pieces to showcase or workshop – please let us know.

Thank you to all those who came and took part in meetings and events, and to the committee for their staunch support last year and previously.

Chair and secretary’s report was proposed and seconded [difficult to tell from recording] and unanimously accepted.

Treasurer’s Report
Jerry Attwood

Jerry presented a poster with the figures.

In: £273 competition entry fees from 39 entries. Out: £275 our prizes. Virtually broke even, probably for the first time. Well done to Philippa and Thomas for the popular competition format.

£40 donation to Springboard
£50 thankyou gift to Paul Moriarty
£448 stock write off – old leaflets, no longer viable.

£364 in, £1359 out – includes pre AGM 2016 meal £127 and Christmas party £130. = £995 deficit.

Capital – £5022 in Building Society and £131 in Bank [agreed by Philippa]

Suggested we continued our policy of no ongoing membership fees till funds are round £2500 level then think about reintroducing fees – possibly 5-6 years.

Thank you letter from Paul Moriarty was read out. Note – Paul has worked on Simon’s projects, so we are still connected.

Cherie Cherchie asked why let the funds go down – why not charge a small ongoing membership fee of £2-3. Jerry explained it was to encourage existing members to stay as when it went up from £8 to £12, some were up in arms. Confirmed that new members are charged £12 to come in, but no continuing membership fee.

Accounts adopted – Simon Jenner proposed, and Deborah Knowles seconded, all in favour.

Motions – none received. No-one wanted to raise anything for discussion.


Philippa thanked the 2016-17 committee

Chair – Philippa re-elected [Proposed Thomas Everchild, seconded Cherie Cherchie, unanimous]

Secretary – Thomas re-elected

Vice Chair – Rob Cohen elected [Proposed Simon Jenner, seconded Murray Hecht – unanimous]

Treasurer – Jerry Attwood re-elected [unanimous]

Committee Members – Simon Moorhead, Judy Upton, Jenny Rowe, John Dutton, Cherie Cherchie, Simon Jenner elected [Thomas Everchild proposed, Philippa Hammond seconded – unanimous]. Further members may be co-opted.

Philippa asked that all Committee members familiar with social media please help promote events online.

AOB – none.

AGM Concluded.

Members’ News

Judy Upton – half hour play Tough Times, Difficult Decisions is performed at the Jermyn St Theatre London next week Tuesday and Wednesday

Christine Foster – Mixed Doubles II is performed at the Coach House Rottingdean 20-22 April

Simon Moorhead – Producing a new play Protect and Survive at the Brighton Fringe – a warning note on the nuclear Pandora’s Box and the current world situation, inspired by BBC 1980s play Threads. Directed by Thomas Everchild, featuring Philippa Hammond and a cast of actors from the area. Tickets are going fast. 9-15 May 5.30pm at Sweet St Andrews’ Waterloo Street

Jenny Rowe – Maydays present three improvised plays inspired by Tim Burton at the Warren 18-20 May

See details of all news in Brighton Fringe brochure

We’re busy joining the dots between Sussex Playwrights, Brighton Actors Networking, Shooting People, Brighton Film Makers Coalition and TBC Audio, to make Brighton a force to be reckoned with.

Part two of the April meeting featured an entertaining performance from Doug Devaney and Ross Gurney-Randall – an excerpt from their Fringe show, followed by Q and A and audience discussion.

Review by Simon Jenner:

Ross and Doug Present Scenes From The Life And Death Of Lord Haw Haw, Britain’s Most Patriotic Traitor

Ross Gurney-Randall and Doug Devaney gave an extraordinarily spirited series of excerpts from their play about William Joyce. Scenes might be too delicate and (dis)respectful of the deconstruction we were offered. This may be a chronological survey of a chronically unpleasant man but we’re not going to be dragged through decades forwards when backwards is more fun.Nevertheless in these snapshots of a man’s early life a glimmering of motive is more than nudged.

Gurney-Randall makes it clear he doesn’t want to be William Joyce so we’re not left guessing about who’s been foisted onto the role. That name rings – yes it’s the traitor Lord Haw-Haw. Think National Theatre of Brent meets Gurney-Randall’s take on traitors: remember his way with them in A Private Audience With Henry VIII in 2015’s Fringe?

Joyce was born of Irish parents in 1906, but in the USA; Joyce however is never registered as an American, which would have been useful later on. When they relocate to Ireland the Civil War pushes Joyce in 1921 to take the British side, and one scene has a couple of edgily stage Irishmen arguing whether to kill a fifteen-year old informer or not. Sad choice. The Joyce family now marked decamp fast, and Joyce grows up moving to the far right politically. He’s several times taken and renewed British passports and indeed doesn’t take up a German one till it’s war, in 1940, which by then is a treacherous act. On such stretches of law stretch necks. At this point we broke off.

Gurney-Randall’s avuncular menace is wondrously suited to all kind of shock savagery, and one laments he’ll only be a hangman once here, he’s clearly born for such roles. In this one he’s also the fact-finder, the obsessively accurate would-be historian, countering Devaney’s wayward sprite and continual carpings. Devaney’s thoroughly shifty and argumentative, and their timing in fact is superb. Devaney starts a grievance rolling and Gurney-Randall tosses it back harrumphing.

Devaney’s role is to tell truth but tell it slant, thus disrupt the action because his disruptive imagination challenges Gurney-Randall‘s neatly linear sense of things. This is where the personalities of story-tellers a la Brent disrupts the characters the storytellers interrupt themselves playing. A continual sense of overhearing is cardinal to the show, one that one hopes can never quite manage to conclude. It’ll leave us dangling though for the main event.

Easily one of the most spirited run-throughs I’ve seen, it was more than a free preview and after-event talk. Sussex Playwrights continues its upward path, enlivening itself with events like these.

Simon Jenner

Next meeting

Our Brighton Festival-time event on May 7th features the playwright, screenwriter and novelist William Nicholson in conversation on writing for stage, page and screen. [Shadowlands / Gladiator / Les Miserables].


IMDB entry:

2017 meeting review: March

Introducing the April meeting and reporting on the March meeting

The last meeting of the 2016-17 season, before the April AGM

Discussion of members’ news was dominated by this month’s Hove Grown festival, featuring many members and their writing, directing and performing work, including:

Rose Collis, Philippa Hammond and Thomas Everchild: ‘The Trials of Colonel Barker’

Murray Hecht: ‘Fit For Work’

Tony Briginshaw:’Anaphylactic Shock’ and ‘Two Controversial Short Stories’

Judy Upton: ‘Cast Iron IX’

Rob Cohen: ‘Men Without Friends’

Simon Fortune: ‘Meebles Get The Show On The Road’

Details of the Hove Grown festival events, dates, venues and tickets at

Work in progress or for sharing

The March meeting was a members’ writing evening of rehearsed readings and discussions:

Sussex Playwrights Two Plays March 2017

One Touch by Steven Lancefield
Shirley Jaffe
Poppy Manley
Sorcha Brooks

Sorcha Brooks is introducing Poppy Manley’s new mental health nurse to their problem patient, rather hastily. You’ll be fine’ she briskly reassures the young recruit, a mental health nurse whose first challenge this is.

Carol’s an old widow black widow in a black shawl… Shirley Jaffe’s cowled cackling’s like a panto witch whose identity’s been veiled in NHS-speak. Jaffe talks of how little Manley’s been told about her, how indeed everything changes on touch. Carol says by touch she can transmit madness, dares Manley’s new nurse to allow her to touch her.

Since Carol has the power of transference, not of grace, but of contamination: her irrational gestures are of course no match for Manley’s training, Manley asserts. Jaffe’s Carol dares her to touch, if she’s so certain. What Manley does, and how she confronts Brooks evince a chilling outcome: is this is spooky or how mental contamination of any belief asks what irrationality it is in us that can catch it? Anyone.

Steven Lancefield’s expertly tailored play is more than compact: it’s a perfectly-crafted fable on paranoia, a certain kind of malign sufferer (those who work in mental health know this) whose challenge to infect demands consequences of reason, unreason and our own vaunted sanities. Who is mad? In just fifteen minutes, Lancefield has unpacked a series of Russian doll baboushkas shawled with venom in fixed grins.

Brooks’ small part is consummate administrator with a flinch of something else s she breezily sweeps Carol’s challenges under a thick utility carpet; it’s chilling in itself, and Brooks catches that recognizable dismissal some NHS administrators bring. Manley carefully calibrates fragile even petulant professionalism gradually to panic. Jaffe’s venomous crone – this is someone who can appear so seraphic on TV – scrunches delight in her machinations: a measured poison-tree dripping its leprous distilment. Lancefield’s play is consummately worthy of their talents. It was all over in under twelve minutes. A perfect radio play for the Radio 4 Woman’s Hour slot – or indeed anywhere else on the network.

The Neverland Singularity by Thomas Everchild
Thomas Everchild
Philippa Hammond

‘You know I had that Bertrand Russell in the back of my cab once, and I asked him well what’s it all about, and you know he couldn’t tell me.’ Maybe it’s urban myth out of stand-up; it probably happened.

There’s a couple of 2005 radio plays by poet Sean O’Brien exploring that perennial British fantasy: a working cabby or labourer confronted with a philosopher who then doesn’t just out-argue them, but shows a thorough knowledge and grounding in their works.

Whilst the mythical cabby pops the question our common sense wants to ask of inductive reasoning, and trounce it, O’Brien takes his cues from historical events. Everchild delights in that perennial the cabby bit does something else again: brings a sexual dynamic: man-in-the-street put-down meets chat-up.

Philippa Hammond is beautifully priggish, asking directions to the conference. Everchild works this out, the science one. He begins questioning Hammond simply, and Hammond does a fine job of registering off-hand impatience gradually assaulted by Everchild’s gift of chirpy petulance, nagging and irritating Hammond into losing her temper but not her reason: she can’t shut down the cabby’s maddening rationality. Each question builds up questions of stellar singularities and astro-physics, which Everchild increasingly shows he understands well in outline. Hammond’s character drops hauteur for mild outrage, but is hooked; her training, initially dismissive of stupid questions, can’t cope with left-field informed ones. This sparring reaches a catharsis and an unexpected (hoped-for) conclusion.

It’s a perfect ten-minute play, ideal for radio like Lancefield’s. Lighter by far in tone, it’s packed with clever interrogatives and leaves us a bit more enlightened on astral physics as well as cultural sexual politics.

Simon Jenner

2017 Meeting review February

Introducing the March meeting and reporting on the February meeting

Sunday Feb 5th 2017 7:00 – 9.00 pm

Special guest – Brighton screenwriter James Payne

News, networking for writers, producers, actors and those who love new drama – and good conversation

Special Guest Speaker Brighton based screenwriter James Payne was in conversation
with Philippa, followed by a lively Q and A session.

James discussed his early days as a drama student in Brighton writing and performing
comedy at the Zincbar cabaret night, and his move into writing sketch comedy for Ant and
Dec. We heard about his experiences as a key scriptwriter on East Enders, winning the
2015 British Soap Awards Best Single Episode for the East Enders 30th Anniversary live

James also talked about his work as a scriptwriter on Hooten and The Lady [which he co-created], Mr Selfridge, Death in Paradise, Hustle, Ashes to Ashes, The Musketeers and many more.

James is also a trustee of Brighton Open Air Theatre – he talked about Adrian Bunting,
whose dream of a permanent open air theatre was realised by his friends following his
untimely death.

Thank you to James for a terrific evening, great insights and advice to aspiring TV writers.

Read more about James and his work here:

Website news

The Sussex Playwrights website has relaunched following a major overhaul, with a new
address, new look and user-friendly mobile responsive format.

Our new address is

We’re currently migrating the content over from the original site and it’s growing every

Meanwhile, do let us know if there is anything you’d like featured on the new site.

Thank you to Ian Black for all your work creating and maintaining the original website – much appreciated!  The Committee and Members.

Members’ and Friends’ news

Christine Foster Cliffhanger Productions presented the return of their hugely successful
Pub Theatre event Mixed Doubles in Rottingdean this month. They’ll be producing more
short play evenings this year – news as it comes. Follow them on Facebook

Robert Cohen presents Men Without Friends, his trio of solo shows. High Vis, Something Rotten and The Trials of Harvey Matusow can all be seen in March at the Hove Grown Festival. Details at

Rose Collis’ latest work, The Trials of Colonel Barker, her Arts Council-supported
adaptation of her own book Col Barker’s Monstrous Regiment, will receive a rehearsed
reading at the Purple Playhouse as part of the Hove Grown festival on Sunday March 26th 8pm. Thomas Everchild will direct and the cast will include Rose Collis, Philippa
Hammond, Guy Wah and Keith Drinkel. Details at

Rose is also giving a talk on Colonel Barker Sunday 5 March, 2pm. Jubilee Library,
Conference Room 3, Jubilee St, Brighton BN1 1GE (fully accessible). Tickets £5, advance – booking recommended:

Tony Briginshaw’s play Anaphylactic Shock, read at the January meeting, is performed
during Hove Grown on March 25th. Details at

Philippa Hammond and Thomas Everchild are collaborating with Simon Moorhead on
the new stage production Protect and Survive at the Brighton Fringe in May.. Details at

Next meeting: Sunday March 5th 2017

An evening of rehearsed readings and discussions of members’ short plays

2017 Meeting review January

Introducing the February meeting and reporting on the January meeting

Sussex Playwrights February meeting and January report


February meeting – special guest James Payne
Constance Cox playwriting competition latest – reading committee now recruiting
Members’ and Friends’ news
Follow and share
January meeting – play reading and discussion report
Arts Council funding
Work in progress and for sharing

February meeting preview
Sunday February 5th 7- 9pm at the New Venture Theatre bar Brighton

Special Guest Speaker Brighton based screenwriter James Payne.

Winner of the 2015 British Soap Awards Best Single Episode for the East
Enders 30th Anniversary live episode.

James will talk about his work as a scriptwriter on Hooten and The Lady [which he co-created], East Enders, Mr Selfridge, Death in Paradise, Hustle, Ashes to Ashes, The Musketeers and many more.

James is also a trustee of Brighton Open Air Theatre.

Read more about James and his work here:

Call for work in progress Do you have a ten minute or so sketch, script or excerpt from your work that you’d like to hear read at the February meeting? We’re always interested in presenting rehearsed readings of members and visitors work for discussion.

Do let us know at or call Philippa the current chair on 07017 037590.

Meeting details

News, networking for writers, producers, actors and those who love new drama – and good conversation
Wine or juice
Free to members, visitors £2 per person.
Please could you let us know if you’ll be coming along, and if you’ll be bringing a guest?

Constance Cox playwriting competition

Latest The competition is now closed [deadline was New Year’s Eve 2016].
We’re delighted to tell you that we’ve had over forty entries so far, including scripts from Japan, Malta, Canada, Russia and the USA.
We’ve started accepting payment via PayPal too, which makes it much easier if you no longer have a chequebook or don’t use sterling.

Competition reading committee

Thank you to those members who’ve volunteered to join the play reading committee to decide the winners. More will be welcome – If you’d like to be a reader, please let us know.

If you’ve submitted a script, you will now be eligible to join the committee!

We’ll be having a committee members’ meeting soon.

Scripts are submitted and forwarded as PDFs via email, rather than print copies.


We invited writers to submit a half hour radio play in the thriller / mystery genre for 2-6 actors. The writers of the top three plays will receive rehearsed readings and recordings of their plays as well as cash prizes.

All entries will be read by professional audio drama producer, Simon Moorhead

Full details, advice and prizes:

Website news

The Sussex Playwrights website is currently having a major overhaul and will be reborn shortly with a new address, new look and user-friendly format. We’ll let you know as soon as it comes online.

Thank you to Ian Black for all your work creating and maintaining the original website – much appreciated! The Committee and Members.

Members’ and Friends’ news

Judy Upton A video of her short story in the SISF Ghost Story Competition: Writing on the Wall Halloween reading

Christine Foster

Hit Pub Theatre returns to Rottingdean! MIXED DOUBLES is BACK by POPULAR DEMAND For THREE NIGHTS ONLY. We’re writing to everyone who came out and enjoyed Cliffhanger Production’s Mixed Doubles in October, to let you know that we’re reprising our opening programme of ten-minute plays:
How Nice Of You To Ask, Dragonflies, Goat, The Ladies’ Loo and Epiphany. This delightful evening is the perfect antidote to the winter blues, and still a bargain at just £5! We hope you’ll spread the word and tell anyone who missed it that there’s one last chance to see this great show. And as always, book early as seating is limited!

February 9th, 10th, and 11th at 8pm Doors open at 7:30
Tickets are on sale right now: online at or in person at MadWax Candles on Rottingdean High St.

We will also be announcing our all-new programme of ten-minute plays in time for Spring, so be sure to follow us on Facebook ( and remember… a lot can happen in ten minutes!”

Philippa Hammond appeared in a series of podcast audio dramas by Peter Gardiner of Two Bit Productions. The latest new drama The Everyman is online now. A dark mystery surrounds a world-changing experiment to launch the first time traveller. Hear it here:

Rose Collis‘ latest work, her Arts Council-supported adaptation of her own book ‘Col Barker’s Monstrous Regiment,’ will receive a rehearsed reading at the Purple Playhouse as part of the Hove Grown festival on Sunday March 26th 8pm. Thomas Everchild will direct and the cast will include Rose Collis, Philippa Hammond, Guy Wah and Keith Drinkel.

Meanwhile Rose will also be giving a talk on the Colonel and the new play Tuesday 28th February 12.10 – 12.50 at Worthing Library. Free event, just drop in.


We’ve heard about the Yeovil Literary Prize for poetry and prose – details here:

Constance Cox

Paul Tomkies is directing Constance Cox’s adaptation of Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime at Medway Little Theatre in Rochester in April. He’s preparing an article about her for the programme and front of house display and have found some very interesting pieces. He couldn’t find a photo – but Trevor Harvey pointed him at The Keep, where Trevor sent our 80 year long archive. Thank you from to Trevor from Paul, who will send us a copy of the article.

Please send us all your latest news either to or to the Facebook Page.

January meeting review

Featured a rehearsed reading of: ‘Anaphylactic Shock’ a short play by Tony Briginshaw with Cherie Cherie, Anita Gilson, Thomas Everchild, Philippa Hammond and guest actors Lucy Mepsted and John Dutton.

Post-reading discussion with audience, actors and the playwright.

Notes by Judy Upton:
Thomas felt that the writer’s strong feelings about the state of the NHS and the unjustified rewards reaped by those at the top came across powerfully in the piece.
Rebecca felt a little more research was needed in places, as slight inconsistencies at times made her doubt the narrative voice. Thomas added that when a play is so issue-based it needs underpinning with strong research.
Anita and Andrew both thought that the phrase in the play ‘lessons will be learnt’ was key as it is now so often used it has become trite and nebulous. It was suggested by Andrew that it might be a better title for the play.
The deaths of the consultant and CEO drew mixed reactions. Simon felt the two ex-nurses should’ve done more to help. Matt thought it would be good to see more of the consultant and CEO becoming victims of their own policies, e.g. long wait for an ambulance. Rebecca suggested the tone could be more that of a dystopian nightmare as in ‘Black Mirror’.
People generally found the topicality of the play refreshing and stimulating of debate.


Work in progress or for sharing

We’re looking to members and guests to take an active part in meetings and showcase their work.

If you’d like to read or perform an excerpt from your latest fiction or non fiction at a meeting for discussion [10 minute slots]

If you’d prefer to have us arrange for someone to read it for you, if you’re happier writing than speaking [10 minute slots]

If you’d like to have actors read an excerpt from your latest script in progress for discussion [10 minute slots]

If you’re an actor who’d like to read

If you have a longer script you’d like considered for rehearsed reading / discussion

Please contact us


Philippa Hammond [Chair], Thomas Everchild [Secretary] and the committee