With Remembrance Day just passed, it is that time of year again where we take just one minute out of our busy schedules to reflect on those who have sacrificed their lives for ‘Queen and Country.’ But what of those who come back damaged? Whether it be physical or psychological, the debate is as strong as ever; do we take enough care of our veterans?
‘Our Boys’ by Jonathan Lewis is a play written from his own experiences in the army, and centres around five soldiers who have been injured in 1980’s Northern Ireland. Their injuries range from frostbite to a bullet in the head, nevertheless together they strive to reconstruct their lives. This heartfelt tale throws a spanner in the works with the arrival of an Officer on the ward as well as a dangerous incident and charges of misconduct threatening the core of their beliefs towards the Army. Should you always trust your commanding Officers? What kind of life awaits the disabled after being discharged from the Army?
The play has an all star cast including Lawrence Fox (Detective Sergeant Hathaway – Lewis); Arthur Darvill (Rory – Doctor Who); and Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom – Harry Potter.) The scene is set in Ward 9, Bay 4, of the Queen Elizabeth Military Hospital, Woolwich, where the walls are painted hospital specification peppermint green with bed blankets to match, and all that is missing is the authentic hospital stench. You’ll be taken on an emotional rollercoaster as you experience them at their best and their worst. Go with Keith as he searches for a diagnosis, Ian as he learns to walk and talk again, and Joe as he questions if sacrificing your life for ‘Queen and Country’ is really worth it.
It is nearly 100 years since the beginning of World War One, back in the time when shell shock was simply diagnosed as cowardice and the likes of physiotherapy were in their earliest forms. Since that time we have come a long way in learning to care for our Soldiers in the right way from psychotherapy to prosthetics, however we can still do more.
So take time out of your busy schedule and refuse to miss out on seeing the production of ‘Our Boys.’ Currently showing at the Duchess Theatre in the West End until 15th December, book your ticket now. Whether you are studying English, Drama, Psychology or History etc., Grab hold of your society chairman and organise a night out to remember. (Plus there are plenty of pubs round the corner!)
– For more information please go to http://www.ourboystheplay.com/