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Tuesday – Friday
9.30 am – 5 pm
Saturday 10 am – 5 pm

Wednesday 7 December at 7 pm
at Sir James Hawkey Hall,
Woodford Green

Sir James Hawkey Hall

No Cunning Plan
No Cunning Plan
is published in hardback by
Sidgwick & Jackson at £20.
More about the book.

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Hear Tony Robinson on BBC Radio 4’s Saturday Live, now on BBC iPlayer Radio.

Tony Robinson

Tony Robinson
No Cunning Plan

The South Woodford Village Gazette
asked Tony Robinson some questions

Tell us about your connections to South Woodford Just before the Second World War, Mum and Dad (who were East Enders) moved down the Lea Bridge Road and bought a semi-detached in South Woodford on Raymond Avenue on the Firs Estate. My whole childhood was spent in South Woodford. I went to the St Philips and St James Church on Grove Road. I went to Snaresbrook College and then Woodford Green prep school. I spent as much time as a could at the Majestic Theatre (now the Odeon) on the High Road and in the Plaza on George Lane where the Sainsbury’s is.

Why did you choose the Sir James Hawkey Hall for your event? My mum and dad loved amateur acting and my first performances were at the Sir James Hawkey Hall, either in poetry competitions or in plays, so coming back here is visiting the birthplace of my career.

What is your most striking memory of South Woodford? Walking down George Lane to South Woodford Station. I always used the Central line when I was a child actor in West End shows.

Did you enjoy your time at Wanstead High School? I hated school and bunked off whenever I could and spent my time reading behind the bookshelves in South Woodford Library.

Which teacher from Wanstead most influenced you and why? My most influential teacher wasn’t from Wanstead High School. It was my elocution teacher Ms Philips, who lived in Chingford and ran private classes for five shillings a term.

Do you still keep in touch with any childhood friends? I still see Susan Pears, the girl who lived next door but one. I often bump into old school mates—a few have turned up at my book tour in places as far as Nottingham and Yeovil.

When was the last time you came back to South Woodford? I used to come back often until my mum died about 12 years ago.

After receiving your knighthood in 2013, you were quoted as saying you will use your new title with “abandon to highlight the causes I believe in.” Can you give some insight into one of those causes? Both my parents suffered from dementia and I have become an ambassador for the Alzheimer’s Society.

Everyone remembers when Baldrick and co were killed in the final scene of Blackadder Goes Forth, originally broadcast just before Remembrance Day in 1989. Did that scene influence you in any way in terms of how you mark 11 November yourself? The First World War has always featured strongly in my sense of history because my Grandad Jack was a Private in the trenches. I have filmed on the Western Front many times and last year told the story of the Battle of the Somme for The Discovery Channel.

Do you think Bob Dylan was a worthy recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature? Yes.

One final serious question. Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom. Boom, Boom… Boom? The finest poem ever written!

Buy ticket online The Wanstead Tap logo

Tickets from Newham Bookshop £25 (including a copy of the book, rrp £20) or £10 (seat only).

There will be a cash bar kindly provided by our friends at The Wanstead Tap.

Forthcoming events

Thursday 28 September at 7.30 pm
at The Wanstead Tap

Iain Sinclair: The Last London

Thursday 12 October at 7.30 pm
at Wanstead Library

The Potato Show
An evening with John Hegley
Redbridge Libraries’ Fabula Festival

Friday 13 October at 7.30 pm
at Wanstead Library

Lottie Moggach: Under the Sun
Redbridge Libraries’ Fabula Festival

Thursday 26 October at 7.30 pm
at The Wanstead Tap

Travis Elborough: The Vinyl Countdown

Wednesday 1 November at 7.30 pm
at The Wanstead Tap

The Gentle Author: East End Vernacular

Thursday 16 November at 7.30 pm
at Conway Hall

Michael Rosen: So They Call You Pisher!
Conway Hall have changed their ticketing website for this event. If you had a problem trying to book tickets, please try again now.

Friday 24 November at 7.30 pm
at The Wanstead Tap

Lucinda Hawksley
Dickens and Christmas

Past events and news

Chris Difford: Some Fantastic Place

Donal Ryan and Sarah Winman
in conversation

Mark Thomas: The Liar’s Quartet

Jacqueline Wilson: Wave Me Goodbye

Stuart Heritage and Jonathan Dean
Writing Family

Julian Woodford
The Boss of Bethnal Green

Will Ashon: Strange Labyrinth

Dave Randall: Sound System
The Political Power of Music

Peter Walker: Bike Nation
How Cycling Can Save the World

Eugenia Cheng: Beyond Infinity

Jake Arnott: The Fatal Tree

Michael Rosen
The Disappearance of Émile Zola

Fundraising event for
refugee charity Care4Calais
Poetry and prose readings with
Julie Christie, Niall Buggy,
David Calder, Andy de la Tour
and Susan Wooldridge

Book signing on publication day
Nadiya Hussain
The Secret Lives of the Amir Sisters

Shami Chakrabarti discusses
the importance of libraries
Inaugural annual Lantern Lecture