Accent on age

Although in ABC Television’s activities the accent has always been on youth, the elderly are not forgotten, and three Armchair Theatre playwrights last season reminded viewers that the root of the problem of dealing with the aged usually lies in ourselves

John Timbers

Alun Owen’s second play, After the Funeral, directed by William Kotcheff, centred round a fine old Welshman, Charles Carson and his grandson, Hugh David left, who wanted the old man to provide a genuine Welsh background for his home

Stanley Mann’s Fifth Floor People, directed by John Moxey, showed an old couple, Elizabeth Begley and J. G. Devlin, whose miserable existence in a dingy attic hung like a cloud over the future of their young neighbour downstairs, Billie Whitelaw

Bedford Studios

One of the most important playwrights of 1960 has been Clive Exton, whose first play under an ABC contract was Where I Live.

William Kotcheff directed this moving story of a housewife, Ruth Dunning, whose jealousy of her brother and sister-in-law, Lloyd Lamble and Madge Ryan, led her to destroy her own self-respect when she forced them to take their turn at housing her old father, Paul Curran

Regional drama

John Timbers

A parent-child relationship was also the theme of A Shilling for the Evil Day, an Ulster story by Joseph Tomelty which was one of several plays with a strong regional flavour presented by Armchair Theatre.

J. G. Devlin and Elizabeth Begley, both distinguished Ulster players, came together again in this drama of a fishing village on All Souls’ Night.

Charles Jarrott, an Englishman who had made his name in Canada, came home to join ABC as a director, and this play showed the combination of warmth, sensitivity and technical brilliance that has earned him much praise throughout the year.

George Haslam designed the sets