New stage play of Twopence to Cross the Mersey heading for Warrington

TwopenceFriday 28 October – Saturday 29 October, 2.30pm and 7.30pm, £18-£24
Parr Hall, Tickets £18-£24
Buy tickets online

A new stage play about the life of acclaimed author Helen Forrester is heading to Warrington this autumn.

Twopence to Cross the Mersey comes to Parr Hall on Friday 28 October and Saturday 29 October for three performances including a matinee. Tickets are on sale now.

The seven-venue tour across the North West and North Wales follows the hugely successful premiere of the new stage play – an adaptation of the book by the same name – which wowed audiences at four Merseyside theatres last spring.

Now, due to popular demand, the play is returning with a new and extended tour for autumn 2016.

Twopence tells the true story of a young girl and her formerly-wealthy family as they are suddenly thrown into poverty during the Great Depression of the 1930s and forced to survive in the slums among the streetwise working class.

Leaving behind the nannies, servants and comfortable middle-class life in the South West of England, they uproot their shattered lives and choose Liverpool as the place to start again to rebuild their dreams and fortune.

Unbeknown to them however, a terrible shock awaits them.

The new version of this dramatic, moving and heart-warming tale is staged by Pulse Records Ltd in collaboration with producer and stage writer Rob Fennah and producer Bill Elms, joined by director Bob Eaton.

Rob worked closely with Helen on the original stage production which she lived long enough to see for herself.

He said: “I got to know Helen very well during the last 20 years of her life and during the writing of the original script she would often send faxes and letters of encouragement together with all sorts of additional information that didn’t appear in her books.

“Helen and I often talked about a touring production of Twopence to Cross the Mersey so I am really pleased to finally see it happen.

“I had always visualised Twopence as a straight play and was thrilled when audiences and reviewers alike gave the new adaptation a big thumbs up.

“We’re excited and delighted to take the play on the road so greater numbers of Helen’s readers can see her most famous book come to life as a stage play and we cannot wait to bring the show to Warrington’s Parr Hall with a very strong cast who will do justice to Helen’s story.”

The new stage adaptation is fully endorsed by the Helen Forrester estate and has the blessing of her son Robert Bhatia who saw the play for himself last spring.

He added: “The play is great. I saw it last year and Maria Lovelady was utterly convincing as my mother.”

The play features an eight-strong ensemble cast including Emma Dears (Judy & Liza, Les Miserables) as Mother, Christopher Jordan (Moving On, Coronation Street) as Father, Maria Lovelady as Helen, and Tom Cawte (Witless, The Lone Pine Club) as Alan.

Eithne Browne (Brookside, Brick Up The Mersey Tunnel), Jake Abraham (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Game of Thrones), Roy Carruthers (Night Collar, Tales from Haunted Liverpool), and Phil Hearne (Good Golly Miss Molly, Blood Brothers) all take on lead roles, as well as supplementary characters throughout.

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