Our Friends In The North

5th May 1982

The Pit Theatre, RSC

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Our Friends in the North opened the Royal Shakespeare’s Company Pit Theatre at the Barbican on 5th May 1982 and played in repertoire there until the 23rd November.

The play was later adapted for television by Peter Flannery and was screened by BBC2 as a nine episode series in early 1996. For further details of the TV series click here.


Olivier Awards Nomination – Play of the Year
Our Friends in the North at the RSC Pit

Our Friends in the North

Written byPeter Flannery

Creative Team

DirectorJohn Caird
Designs byUltz
Lighting byLeo Leibovici
Sound byJohn A Leonard
Fights byNels Henum
Company Voice Work byCicely Berry
Stage Manager Titus Grant
Deputy Stage Manager Vikki Heywood
Assistant Stage Manager Anne Milner


Roy Johnson, a Policeman George Raistrick
Bede Connor, Chairman of the Council Bert Parnaby
Austin Donohue, Leader of the Labour Group and Businessman Jim Broadbent
John Edwards, Builder Andrew Jarvis
Eddie Wells, a Local Councillor Fred Pearson
Billy Hutchinson James Garbutt
Florrie, his Wife Gillian Webb
Nicky, their son Peter Chelsom
Geordie Hurst David Whitaker
Tosker Cox Anthony O’Donnell
Mary, his Wife Jane Carr
The Met
Sir Edward Jones, CommissionerBert Parnaby
Alan Whitaker, a Deputy Assistant Commissioner Fred Pearson
Harold Chapple, an Inspector, later Head of C.I.D. Andrew Jarvis
Ronald Conrad, a Detective Roger Allam
Weir, a Detective Jim Broadbent
Black, a Detective Peter Chelsom
Dennis Cockburn, a Detective Chief Superintendent Peter Ellis
Sir William Sampson, the New Commissioner James Garbutt
Benny Barratt Anthony O’Donnell
Charlie George Raistrick
Jimmy Roadhouse Joseph Marcell
Waster Christopher Hurst
Rusty Julia Hills
Debbie Jane Carr
Mrs. Kelly, a Cabinet Minister Gillian Webb
Claude Seabrook, later Home Secretary Bert Parnaby
Walter Sykes, a Senior Civil Servant Peter Ellis
The City
John Bourne, an Oil Executive Roger Allam
The Minister James Garbutt
Henny, his Wife Gillian Webb
Lance, his Son Christopher Hurst
Joseph, his Chauffeur Joseph Marcell
Kruger, a Mercenary Leader Roger Allam
Other parts played by members of the company.
In the second part of the run, the parts played by Peter Chelsom were played by Philip Walsh.


Costumes made byRST Production Wardrobe
Costume SupervisorAllan Watkins
Assistant Costume SupervisorSandria G Reese
Set byRST Scenic Workshops
Painting byRST Scenic Paintshop
Properties made byRST Property Shop
Wigs and Make-up by RST Wig Department
Bicycle provided byRaleigh Cycles (Nottingham)
Telephones provided byBritish Telecom (Coventry)
Advice on Penal ReformMadge Elliot
Beer provided byJim Merriton, Scottish and Newcastle Breweries
Glasses provided byMr.Jackson, Jacksons Clear Glass
Ten Shilling Notes provided byChris Stoker, Stanley Gibbons
Help and Advice fromWarwickshire Constabulary