will be our next production at Bob Hope Theatre. 


Director: Barbara Archer



Roberta (also known as Bobbie), Peter, and Phyllis live comfortable, privileged lives with their loving mother and father in London. One day, everything changes: Father suddenly leaves the family home under mysterious circumstances and the children move to a modest house in the countryside to live a far more isolated and impoverished existence. The children do not understand why their father is absent, and their mother is reluctant to give them any details about his exact whereabouts.



The children cope with their adverse circumstances by forming a bond with their new home and community. They develop a deep love for the nearby railway, especially the train they nickname the Green Dragon. Each day, they appear on the platform to wave at this train as it passes, and a passenger they nickname the old gentleman waves back to them. The children forge friendships with the railway employees, including the Station Master and the Porter, Mr. Perks. During their time in the countryside, they have several adventures, including preventing a train accident, rescuing a baby from a burning barge on the canal, and aiding an injured boy in a railway tunnel. Although poor, the children seek to perform acts of kindness for others whenever they can, while Mother maintains her fierce independence by supporting the family through constantly writing for various publications.

The appearance of a Russian Exile at the station midway through the novel foreshadows Father’s whereabouts. The Russian Exile has suffered arbitrary imprisonment—and so, too, has Father, who is serving a five-year sentence for supposed treason. Although all three of the children gradually become aware that there is something strangely amiss in their father’s absence, it is only Roberta—the eldest and most sensitive of the children—who finally discovers the truth in an old newspaper article. She responds to this discovery by writing a letter to the old gentleman asking for his assistance, as the well-connected and kind man is often a benefactor to the family in times of need. The old gentleman’s intervention secures Father’s release and leads to the eventual reunion of the family at the novel’s end.

The Railway Children Cast

Roberta Natalie Payne

Peter Ben Guindi

Phyllis Izzey Bahari

Mother Diane Adcock

Father Will Hawkes

Perks Allan Osborne

Mrs Perks Jenny Bahari

Cook/Mrs Viney/ensemble Andree Jordan

Butler/Rail Superintendent/ensemble Robin Collett

Maid/ensemble Natalie McCalla

Doctor/ensemble Clive Madel

Shepansky Dave Jordan

Old Gentleman John Adcock

Jim/ensemble Josh Stiggear

Workman 2/ensemble Peter Evans

Workman 1/ensemble Robert Bahari



This is a Memory Play – The children are looking back on events. Therefore these 3 leads need to be adults playing children, and 3 working as one! They have a lot of dialogue!!!


ROBERTA (Bobbie) – playing age 15/16 – The eldest child, very fair to her siblings who tend to argue.  A personality like her Mother.


PETER  - playing age 13 – Middle child, intelligent, resourceful, sensitive, takes the lead in a crisis.


PHYLLIS – playing age 11 – The youngest and least mature ( a great challenge to a young adult actor)


MOTHER – playing age 35/40 –Devoted to her family, and always ready to help others in need. A very kind soul. Needs a smattering of competent French language.


PERKS – playing age 35/40 – Station Master and good friend to the children.

All the above are played by single actors. Those below can be doubled!! Have given suggestions, OR all played by individuals which will enlarge the cast!


FATHER - playing age 40/45 – High ranking Civil Servant, devoted husband, wrongly imprisoned for espionage.  Ensemble


COOK/ MRS VINEY – playing age 40/50 – Narrator. Ensemble


MAID/MRS PERKS – playing age 30/40 – Narrator. Ensemble


BUTLER/DOCTOR FORREST – playing age 30/40 – Narrator Ensemble


JIM/RAILWAY WORKER playing age 20/30 Ensemble


OLD GENTLEMAN playing age 70/80 – Jim’s Grandfather Ensemble


MR SZEZCPANSKY (pronounced Schepansky) playing age 35/50 Strange long-haired man, with shifty eyes.  Has to speak in Russian and French. Ensemble

Musical Productions



South London's award-winning amateur dramatics society

Performing since 1924.  NODA affiliated


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The Railway Children

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