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The Ghost Train
by Arnold Ridley

Dates 16, 17 and 18 November 2001 @ 8pm (3pm Saturday matinee). Tickets:
Venue: Chelsea Theatre, Worlds End Place, Kings Road, Chelsea SW10


Saul Hodgkin - Rob Buck
Elsie Winthrop - Sophie Meeson
Richard Winthrop - Hamish McCartan
Charles Murdock - Nick Chapman
Peggy Murdock - Claire Simpson
Miss Bourne - Nikki Williams
Teddy Deakin - Pete Picton
Julia Price - Louise Ball
Herbert Price - Anthony Worssam
John Sterling - Damian Molyneux
Jackson - Tim Goble


Directed by Phil Matcham
Produced by Carmen Betteridge
Stage Managed by Victoria Dark

Lighting by Phil Herrey and Morna Whitcombe
Sound by Merry Graham and Peter Gee
Costumes by Victoria Dark and Krista Stearns

Set Design and Artwork by Rob Buck
Props by Shaun Baker
Set construction by members of the company

Thanks to: Kensington & Chelsea Arts Council, KallKwik Kings Road.


Train delays are not something new.

Back in 1925, a young playwright named Arnold Ridley found himself stranded for four hours on a deserted platform at Mangostfield Station whilst on a trip form the Midlands. With plenty of time before his delayed connection was due, he came up with an idea for a comedy/mystery/thriller set in an out-of-the-way Cornish station late one stormy night. That play was The Ghost Train.

The play proved a great success. After a premiere in Brighton it transferred to the West End where it ran for over 600 performances at St Martin's Lane Theatre. The ghostly sounds required for the play needed 10 men, using amongst other things three different drums, and 18 gallon galvanised iron tank, a milk chrun, a thundersheet, cylinders of compressed air and a garden roller! Fortunately, modern technology allows us to produce these effects without quite so much fuss. Besides, trying to find a milk churn for hire is pretty difficult these days.

Apart form its fame on stage, The Ghost Train also made it to the big screen. It has been made into a film on four occasions - in 1927, 1931, 1933 (in Hungary, curiously enough) and then finally in 1941, starring the music hall comedian Arthur Askey.

Arnold Ridley of course went on to find great fame as the slow but well-meaning Private Godfrey in Dad's Army. He was awarded an OBE for his services to the British theatre in 1982.

For our production, the play has been transferred to some time in the late 1940s/early 1950s.

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Chelsea Players is a registered charity in the United Kingdom, number 1010949.