Q: Do the Lord Chamberlain’s papers in the British Library contain any plays with a Welsh connection?

Answer: Yes – but I don’t think it’s a treasury of lost masterpieces. E.g.

Thomas Jones, Kindness Repaid (1916) `An ingenuous and amateurish domestic drama of Welsh life, showing an old farmer’s mistake in preferring as suitor for his daughter the apparently prosperous steward, Lloyd, to the tramp sheltered by him out of kindness and subsequently employed as a farmhand. When the thieving steward turns out to be in the pay of the Germans the humble tramp proves to be a fugitive of position and means, both willing and able to repay for the farmer’s kindness by helping his family out of its troubles.’ Guild Hall, Carnarvon. 1 May 1916.

L. Mortimer When Love Creeps in Your Heart (1916) – melodrama set in a Welsh factory where a German spy is intent on sabotage. `A sentimental melodrama, with many confused issues loosely connected by sentimental songs and social politics of today’. In a secondary plot the son of the foundry owner tries to lure the girl he has seduced away to London

E. E. G. Those who Wait (1918) 1 Act. ` A simple and moving little sketch of the great day in the lives of an old Welsh collier and his wife, who find the telegram in which they fear news of their soldier-son’s wounding or death, announcing his award of the VC and conveying their invitation to Buckingham Palace for the investiture. The piece is full of pretty homely touches: and its references to the King’s kindliness and its appreciation by his humbler subjects are marked by perfect taste and sincere feeling.’ Royal Assembly Rooms Tenby, 29 November 1918

And so on.

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