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North Walsham stage play about First World War heroine Edith Cavell

PUBLISHED: 14:45 17 September 2015 | UPDATED: 14:45 17 September 2015

Judi Daykin as Edith Cavell

Judi Daykin as Edith Cavell

Archant

A new play looking at the bravery of tragic First World War nurse Edith Cavell is being staged in North Walsham this month. Edith Cavell – Facing The Silence is being toured by the Broad Horizons Theatre Company at the Atrium on Friday September 25.

The work, written by John Mangan and performed by Stalham-based actor Judi Daykin is a life-affirming celebration of a woman whose trailblazing story will never be forgotten.

It is set in 1915. Norfolk nurse, Edith Cavell, has been captured by the Germans and accused of treason.

She has faced 60 days of near-solitary confinement, interrogation and a trial. Surely the Germans will not execute a woman?

Yet, Edith Cavell is facing another trial, alone in her cell - alone with the only person who knows who Edith Cavell really is – herself. Edith Cavell is facing the silence.

Set in Edith’s prison cell in the St Gilles Prison on Brussels, the new play explores the life and trial of this trailblazing woman.

A pioneer of nursing training, with a strong sense of duty, Edith found herself trapped in an occupied country surrounded by an English-hating German military hierarchy.

She is played by Judi Daykin, an experienced stage and screen actor, singer and former director of the Happing Festival.

She said: “I have long admired Nurse Cavell’s actions and bravery.

“Many people have heard of Edith, but not so many realise just what a risk she took in her resistance work or how she protected allied soldiers and her trainee nurses.

“John’s new play brings out the human cost of duty and sacrifice, not to mention Edith’s strong character and sense of humour, along with her life story. It’s fabulous piece of writing.”

Director Rhett Davies added: “Audience reactions have been extremely positive. We have even had standing ovations.

“It’s a very moving and entertaining piece of work.”

■Tickets for the 7.30pm show are £10 (£8 concessions)from http://artsnorthnorfolk.org or 01692 218060

■For more information about the company and Judi Daykin visit www.broadhorizonstheatre.co.uk

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