Mr Whatnot (1976)

New Play:


First performance:
Opening night:
Final performance:

Alan Ayckbourn

Theatre in the Round at Westwood
Main house (Round)

26 October 1976
27 October 1976
13 November 1976

Alan Ayckbourn
Helga Wood
Stage Manager:
Deputy Stage Manager:
Assistant Stage Manager:
David Millard
Christopher Gray
Wendy Murray
Mr Whatnot
Lord Slingsby-Craddock
Lady Slingsby -Craddock
Amanda, their daughter
Cecil, her fiance
Mrs Grisley Williams
Herbert, the butler / various roles
Agnes, the maid
Malcolm Hebden
Christopher Godwin
Heather Stoney
Diane Bull
Robin Herford
Alison Skilbeck
Bob Eaton
Wendy Murray

Why is this play significant?

The first play to be staged at Theatre in the Round at Westwood and one of the few Ayckbourn plays at the time which had not previously been seen in Scarborough, having premiered at the Victoria Theatre, Stoke-on-Trent, in 1963.


Mr Whatnot was the first play to be staged at the Theatre In The Round At Westwood (later renamed the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round, see below).
The play was deliberately chosen by Artistic Director Alan Ayckbourn as it was one of his few plays to have never received a professional performance in Scarborough and he felt the lightness of the piece was well-suited to the celebratory nature of the company moving to a new home.
When the company moved to its second home in October 1976 at the former Westwood County Modern School, it was only supposed to be a temporary home until a proposed permanent theatre in the round was built in place of Vernon Road car park. As a result, for the first two years of its existence, the venue was called Theatre in the Round at Westwood. When it became apparent the new theatre was not going to be built and 'Westwood' was to become a more permanent home, the venue's name was changed on 1 April 1978 to the Stephen Joseph Theatre in the Round in honour of its founder.


All research for this page by Simon Murgatroyd.