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Forging Ahead


  • Playwright

    John McClelland 

  • Notes

    This play is suitable for 8-11 year olds. It incorporates movement, rhythm and extensive sound effects and was written to support the teaching of 'Life in Victorian Times' at Key Stage 2 (UK curriculum).

  • Synopsis

    Josiah Hudson, the local landowner, employs Sean Murray as a boatman on the river and his daughter Sarah as a farm girl. Their lives are peaceful and rural until the day when Mr. Hudson invites an English engineer to carry out a survey for building a bridge over the river to carry the new railway. Forging Ahead explores the effects of Victorian industrial development and technology, and the changes that were brought to the landscape and social conditions.

  • Play Type

    Theatre for Young Audiences

    Number Of Acts


  • Cast Size Male


  • Cast Size Female


  • Cast Notes

    The play also requires a pre-recorded narrator's voice.


  • Date of First Production

    30 January 1997

  • Producer

    Produced by Replay Theatre Company

  • Original Venue

  • Venue Notes

    This play was first performed at Glengormley Primary School, Newtownabbey, as part of a tour to schools and venues.

Original Cast  
George Marshall Richard Orr
Narrator's Voice Frank Quinn
Sean Murray Noel McGee
Sarah Murray Tara Lynne O'Neill
Josiah Hudson Andrew Downs
Production Team  
Director Janice Jarvis
Designer Jane Linz Roberts
Producer Jan Branch
Sound Designer Green Dolphin Studios
Movement Director Jill Burns
Company Manager Maureen Macauley
Administration Assistant Irene Swift
Stage Manager Maureen Macauley
Assistant Stage Manager Angela McClune
Technician Angela McClune
Set Construction Jim Carson
Costume Construction Heather Long
Voice Coach Susan Lines



  • Territory

    All Territories

  • Rights Type

    All Rights

  • Contact

    John McClelland

  • Address

    1 Balfour Avenue
    Co. Antrim
    Northern Ireland

  • Email


The information for this entry was taken from the original production programme. Additional information was supplied by Replay Productions from information contained in the company files.