First wave of cast announced for UK premiere tour of best-selling book

The producers of Helen Forrester’s By the Waters of Liverpool are thrilled to announce the first wave of cast for the play’s first major UK tour.

The stunning production, which calls at Warrington’s Parr Hall on Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 March 2020, is the latest instalment from the same team which brought the author’s timeless story Twopence to Cross the Mersey to the stage.

After a hugely successful premiere run at the Liverpool Empire Theatre last Autumn, the play will now make its way round the country telling the next chapter of Helen’s fascinating tale.

Mark Moraghan, best known for his roles in Holby City, Coronation Street and Brookside, has been confirmed as Helen’s father John, having previously played him in the 2007 and 2009 adaptations of Twopence.

Coronation Street and Doctor Who’s Eric Potts will play Mr Ellis, Helen’s fiery-tempered boss. Eric has also appeared in Peak Practice, Heartbeat, The Royal, Last of the Summer Wine and Steel River Blues.

Other confirmed cast members are Lynn Francis as The Deaconess, Danny O’Brien as Harry O’Dwyer, Chloe McDonald as Helen’s sister Fiona and Roy Carruthers as The Detective.

The search is now on to find the lead role of Helen, together with Mother and Helen’s brother Alan.

By the Waters of Liverpool is the third instalment of Helen’s autobiographical collection which also includes Twopence and Little Miss.

Described by The Stage as “a big sweeping story of real emotion”, this is the powerful tale of Helen Forrester’s childhood and adolescence in poverty-stricken Liverpool during the 1930s.

Helen is 16 and fighting a bitter battle with her parents for the right to educate herself and go out to work.

During the Great Depression, Helen’s father lost his fortune when the stock market crashed and the family were suddenly thrown into poverty.

Leaving behind the nannies, servants and comfortable middle-class life in the South West of England, the Forrester’s chose Liverpool as the place to start over; they were in for a terrible shock.

Taken out of school to care for her younger brothers and sisters while her parents struggled to re-build their shattered lives, Helen is treated like an unpaid slave and is desperate to escape.

By 1939, now aged twenty and with Britain on the brink of war, she has never been kissed by a man.

But things start looking up for Helen when she meets a tall strong seaman and falls in love.

By the Waters of Liverpool also features flashbacks to Helen’s first two volumes of autobiography so newcomers will get a complete picture of her life.

Adapted by Rob Fennah and directed by Gareth Tudor Price, the stage play is fully authorised by the Helen Forrester estate.