Lynne Truss Radio Plays

Lynne Truss has written many scripts for BBC Radio 4, including dramas, features, sitcoms and talks. Her drama A Home Truth was shortlisted for scriptwriting prize at Prix Italia. Current broadcasts include the second series of Acropolis Now; a six part series of monologues A Certain Age, and an innovative six-part series of duologues Full Circle. It Can’t Go On, three 15-minute talks on the burden of choice, will be broadcast this September. A second series of A Certain Age - six monologues for men, are scheduled for May 2005.

Lynne began her writing life as a literary journalist, editing the books section of The Listener magazine between 1986 and 1990. Since then she has kept a high profile as a journalist, writing for The Times as a critic, columnist and sportswriter (shortlisted for Sportswriter of the Year 1997); for Woman's Journal ("Columnist of the Year", 1996); and more recently as a critic for the Daily Mail and The Sunday Times, where she is a regular book reviewer.

Lynne has contributed to many anthologies and published seven books, including the renowned Eats, Shoots & Leaves and three novels such as With One Lousy Free Packet of Seed, Tennyson's Gift and Going Loco


02.08.97 Ladies' Day*, 60m
13.04.99 Summoned by Shelves*, 45m
12.09.99 View from Abroad-LT goes to Ireland to be bored by golf (feature)
20.10.01 The Game's Up...LT talks about people who can't stand sport
25.01.02 The Mother, monologue (series title - "A certain age*")
01.02.02 The Wife, monologue
08.02.02 The Daughter, monologue
09.02.02 The photocopier (feature)
15.02.02 The Other Woman, monologue
16.02.02 The colour television (feature)
22.02.02 The Sister, monologue
23.02.02 The Car Radio (feature)
01.03.02 The Cat Lover, monologue
05.03.02 Acropolis Now, comedy series, 6 x 30m, rpt. 15.8.02
22.11.02 Beside the Seaside*, 45m
11.01.03 Getting a man in ...(factual): general complaining
??.??.03 Cutting a dash...(factual): about grammar
01.01.03 Full Circle,1: Friends*
13.01.03 Full Circle,2: The "Ex"*
20.01.03 Full Circle,3: The Builder*
27.01.03 Full Circle,4: The Neighbour*
03.02.03 Full Circle,5: The Colleague*
10.02.03 Full Circle,6: Friends (all 30m)*
31.12.03 Cold Calling*, 45m
24.12.05 Christmas rant, monologue
??.??.05 A certain age (male series, 6 monologues*) - see below.

Asterisked plays known to exist in VRPCC. More information is needed on this page; please email me if you are able and willing to assist.


LADIES' DAY (R4 2 Aug 97) was a golfing comedy. Joanna is horrified by the sexism in the Golf Club; the male members are horrified by the presence of women in the bar. As one of the older members put it, "it's like some lacy underwear party now"....the women barge into the bar and order drinks for themselves..." But to qualify for an EC grant to upgrade the "Gentlemen's Facilities", women have to be admitted. Nicholas Farrell plays Robert and James Grout, Jack, in this entertaining romp.

SUMMONED BY SHELVES A frenetic tale set in a library ... with Rachel Atkins, Douglas Hodge and Sam West; dir. Brian King.

"A bit of rough"...Lynne Truss in County Kildare, reporting on the odd world of golf.

The following week we had 5 superb plays in as many days: (R4 7 -11 Aug 1415): The bed & breakfast star, by Jacqui Wilson; The Midnight Fox by Betsy Byars; The growing summer, by Noel Streatfield, where a family of children stay with their dotty aunt in a crumbling ruin; The fast gentleman, a farce set on a boat and adapted by Jeremy Nicholas; and possibly the best of the lot, Place of the invalids, by Lynn Truss; where Hilary has taken to her bed with a terrible cold and is about to tune in to the afternoon play when her hypochondriac husband turns up and finds a hundred imaginative ways to ruin her day. (VRPCC newsletter, Sep00)

MONOLOGUES under the common title "A Certain Age", were given by women in their forties: "The Mother" performed by Siobhan Redmond; "The Wife" by Janine Duvitski; "The |Daughter" by Rebecca Front; "The Other Woman" ...performer not known ...."The Sister"...not known...."The Cat Lover" by Dawn French.

....update....Lynne Truss’s recent book “A Certain Age” consists of 12 radio monologue scripts. The monologues, broadcast on radio 4, have also been issued on CD by the BBC.
The mother, the wife, the daughter, the other woman, the sister, the cat lover.

David Attenborough, Valerie Singleton and Mary Quanttalk about the switch-over from black and white to colour. I seem to remember a demonstration on "Tomorrow's World" with Raymond Baxter in about 1969 or 1970 where some boffins had worked out how to get colour onto a black & white set. It worked, too ...but that was the last we saw of it.

Another daft title, "Don't drive to Wagner"...but who would listen to Wagner when the alternative is a radio play? Contributions from Sean Street, Elton John, Vicki Butler-Henderson.

In teaching, we used to bin our rubbish...now we photocopy it ...contributions from James Dyson, Helena Kennedy and Jonathan Miller.

FULL CIRCLE is an interesting series of two-handers; one character from each play appears in the next.

Three people are about to start work in a call centre. Lots of opportunity for dealing with disgruntled, demanding and needy callers. How will the new recruits fare, and what will they do with the unexpected? With Jason Hughes, Katy Murphy, Kulvinder Ghir, Ewan Bailey, Charlie Simpson, Marlene Sidaway, Rachel Atkins, Lucy Lott, Becky Hindley. Future plays about call centres are unlikely to be based in England, I guess, unless the geniuses controlling our industries take early retirement. Actors- practise your Indian accents. Directed by Karen Rose.

Update - this play shortlisted for Tinniswood Award 2003.

.....New comedy, true and touching.............the intertwined stories of three call-centre operators: Ryan, on his last day in a nightmare job, Daniella, with the patience of a saint, and Raman, pretending he's not talking from India. (....Gillian Reynolds, Daily Telegraph)

Broadcast on Christmas Eve, this was billed as an anti-Christmas round-robin monologue in Daily Telegraph. In the event, there wasn't much in her talk about this rather odd form of non-communication. A pity. I could go on about this at more length....I wonder why alleged achievements of close family have to be written out and sent to strangers......

For those who are interested there's a book just out with a hundred or so of them (Christmas round-robins, that is) printed in all their glory. I'm told it's a hoot.

The father, the son, the husband, the pedant, the brother, the married man. Follow-up series to that which went out in 2002.

Nigel Deacon, Diversity Website

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