Our Country’s Good

Our Country's Good

Timberlake Wertenbaker
based on the novel by Thomas Keneally

Directed by Ruth Readshaw

Venue: Old Fire Station
Date: Monday 1 (Preview) – Saturday 6 November
Time: 7.30pm (& Saturday 2.30pm)
Price: £12, £14, £16 (Monday Preview £10)

How to book your tickets

“The last word will be the play…”

The first penal colony in Australia forms the dramatic backdrop to Timberlake Wertenbaker’s modern classic about the redemptive quality of theatre, Our Country’s Good. 

Britain began transporting its poor and petty criminals to Botany Bay in 1788 under the governorship of Captain Arthur Phillip. Based on a real historical figure, it was he who decided to introduce the brutalized men and women to culture in the form of rehearsing and performing the most popular play of its day, Farquhar’s The Recruiting Officer.

We follow the lives of these wretched creatures, many of whom are also based on real convicts, as they bicker, fight, love and yearn for home in this new land. The action is observed by an Australian Aboriginal as he witnesses the arrival of the colonizers and the destruction of his people’s way of life.


An Australian Aboriginal  Nikhil Sharma


John Arscott  Ian Nutt

Mary Brenham Rachael Twyford

Dabby Bryant  Anna Clark

Black Caesar  Nikhil Sharma

James ‘Ketch’ Freeman  Tom Hare-Duke

Meg Long  Moya Hughes

Liz Morden Joy Shorten 

Robert Sideway  Paul Clifford

Duckling Smith Ellen Publicover

John Wisehammer  Richard Readshaw



Director  Ruth Readshaw

Musical Director and Sound Design  Jeannie Harrison

Stage Manager  Gail Pittam

Lighting Design Will Penington


Captain Arthur Phillip, RN Richard Readshaw        

Major Robbie Ross, RM Tom Hare-Duke

Captain David Collins, RM  Paul Clifford

Captain Watkin Tench, RM  Ellen Publicover

Captain Jemmy Campbell, RM Moya Hughes

Reverend Johnson  Rachael Twyford

Lieutenant Will Dawes, RM  Joy Shorten

Second Lieutenant Ralph Clark, RM Niall McDaid

Second Lieutenant William Faddy, RM  Anna Clark

Midshipman Harry Brewer, RN  Ian Nutt