Arnold Ridley was born in Bath in 1896, and has been one of Britain's most prolific, if not best known, playwrights. Indeed it would appear that he was never happy to do things singly; he wrote thirty plays, was married three times and served in both world wars, an achievement which very few men can claim. He also had the rare honour of playing two different parts in B.B.C. Radio's The Archers. Yes, Arnold Ridley not only played Doughy Hood, Ambridge's village baker, he was also the original Walter Gabriel.
He is, of course, best known as Private Godfrey the mild-mannered, former consientious objector and Home-Guard volunteer in B.B.C. Televisions Dads Army. It was this role which, no doubt, contributed to him being awarded the O.B.E. in 1981.
The Ghost Train was first performed in 1925 and, has been an almost permanent feature of British theatre. There was a brief period when the play was out of production and Ridley, somewhat short of cash, was persuaded to sell the performing rights for a "song" , or so we are told. The play enjoyed an immediate revival of popularity which has continued until this day. If true, then Ridley probably lost a small fortune as a result of that rash act.
Ridley played the part of Saul Hodgkin, in The Ghost Train, at the Garrick Theatre in 1927.
|Cast (in order of appearance)|
|Saul Hodgking||Geoffrey Wharam|
|Richard Winthrop||David Pike|
|Charles Murdock||John Turnbull|
|Peggy Murdock||Enid Clark|
|Miss Bourne||Ann Dalglish|
|Teddie Deakin||Douglas Taylor|
|Julia Price||Lynda Edwards|
|Herbert Price||Peter Neve|
|John Sterling||Jim Oliver|
|For the Maskers:|
|Directed by||Mollie Manns|
|Stage Manager||Kenneth Spencer|
|Assisted by||Tim Archer|
|Assisted by||Clive Weeks|
|Set Design||Kenneth Spencer|
|Hair Styling||Robert Manns|
|Technical Director||Ron Tillyer|
|Business Management||Graham Buchanan, Betty Riggs|
|Programme Design||Brian Stansbridge|
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