The Lock Asylum
A radio drama by Cara Jennings and Sophie Trott
Anna-Kate Golding – Martha Threadgill
Jenny Gordon – Mrs Baker
Rosie May Jones – Mary Carter
Jonathan Kemp – Reverend Scott
Sophie Trott – Ruth Plym
Reuben Williams – Mr Fisher
Charmaine Wombwell – Sarah Downes
All the other parts were played by the cast.
Studio Manager – Camilo Salazar
Historical Consultant – Professor Patrick Wallis
Director – Beckie Mills
Producers – Beckie Mills, Cara Jennings and Sophie Trott.
Produced in association with LSE department of Economic History, Morley Radio, and Positive Cynic Audio
Thanks to Esther Baker at Synergy Theatre Project, Dorian Ford, Mandy Gordon, Sean Grundy, Lizzie Knight, Ray Malone, Father Damien Mason at St Mary Brookfield, Kevin Sienna, John Styles, Simon Szreta, the participants from our workshops at Dunraven 6th form, Morley College, City Lit, Totteridge Academy, Drama Studio London, The Mollies at St Margaret’s House; the department of Economic History at LSE, and its students, and Morley Radio.
This compelling and visceral new drama takes inspiration from real histories of ‘fallen women’ in 1787, as they enter The Lock Asylum, a new institution that aimed to morally reform them following treatment for syphilis with mercury. Sophie Trott stars as Ruth Plym, a real patient, who, pregnant and desperate, deals with the restrictive conditions she finds herself in. She tries to bond with Martha, Mary and Sarah, her traumatised and volatile fellow inmates – young adults, trying follow their dreams in London town, the richest city in the world. They’ve been chewed up and spat out by a society where life is cheap and options limited, if you are female and poor. Will they take up this second chance to become devout Christian servants or wives? Or will they stick two fingers up at the proto prison, and go back to a life of freedom and risk? Will anyone survive beyond the age of 25?