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30 Years & 12 Helen's Later: Helen Forrester's Life On Stage Is Finally Set To Come To An End

30 Years & 12 Helen's Later — Helen Forrester's Life On Stage Is Finally Set To Come To An End At The Floral Pavilion In New Brighton After A Major UK Tour & Plethora Of Critical Acclaim

By The Waters Of Liverpool really is a special piece of theatrical work that we absolutely recommend you go and immerse yourself in (Credit: Anthony Robling/Bill Elms/Pulse Stage/Image was provided to The Liverpudlian to share, courtesy of the Publicist on behalf of their client. We make no claim to this content).
By The Waters Of Liverpool really is a special piece of theatrical work that we absolutely recommend you go and immerse yourself in (Credit: Anthony Robling/Bill Elms/Pulse Stage/Image was provided to The Liverpudlian to share, courtesy of the Publicist on behalf of their client. We make no claim to this content).
  • By The Waters of Liverpool sails back to Liverpool City Region venues as part of its successful UK tour.

  • Tour completes on Sunday the 29th October 2023 in New Brighton's Floral Pavilion.

  • The final stage production of acclaimed author Helen Forrester’s captivating life story returns to three LCR venues this month as part of successful UK tour.

Helen Forrester's By The Waters Of Liverpool opened in Liverpool’s M&S Bank Arena last month and has since gone to wow audiences in venues across England and Wales.


The tour now returns to the Liverpool City Region, visiting The Floral Pavilion in New Brighton from the 24th to the 29th of October.


You can purchase tickets for By The Waters Of Liverpool at the Floral Pavillion in New Brigtion now for Wednesday the 25th to Sunday the 29th of October, including additional Matinee Performances.



By The Waters Of Liverpool is a stunning period drama produced by the team who brought the smash-hit Twopence To Cross The Mersey to the stage.


The creative team include producers Rob Fennah and Lynn McDermott for Pulse Stage Productions and Bill Elms Productions. The show is directed by Gareth Tudor Price and written by Rob Fennah.

'There is nothing like the Liverpool City Region venues though and we are delighted to be coming home next week for the next leg of the tour... finally ending the tour in New Brighton at the end of October.' - Bill Elms, Co-Producer of By The Waters Of Liverpool.

It’s been a long time coming to get the play out on the road. Its inaugural tour was scheduled to run for 12 weeks across 17 venues in Spring 2020. After some years in the planning, the tour was abandoned after visiting only three theatres as it was due to open at St Helens Theatre Royal, when the country was forced into a national lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, it was also rescheduled twice when the pandemic failed to abate.


But before the curtain is up on this new and final tour, further challenges lay ahead for the team – including a life-saving operation and theatre closure.


Co-producer Lynn McDermott needed a kidney transplant. And it was writer and partner Rob Fennah who stepped in to be tested and was a close enough match to donate a kidney. Lynn and Rob underwent the transplant six months ago in March 2023 – but were determined to get back to work on the tour as soon as possible, defiant with the message: 'The show must go on.'


A short time later, tour opening venue The Epstein Theatre in Liverpool closed after funding was cut. So the team were tasked with finding two new venues with very little time to replace the two week run originally planned for the Epstein. The Auditorium at M&S Bank Arena on the banks of the River Mersey stepped in to save the day and The Gladstone in Port Sunlight on the Wirral also played a key role by welcoming the play.


The Forrester shows have been on stage for 30 years with both the musical and stage play versions of Twopence To Cross The Mersey and now with By The Waters Of Liverpool. Twelve actors have played the lead role of Helen over the years, as young and older Helen, now Helen Forrester’s Mersey voyage finally comes to an end.


Writer and Co-Producer, Rob Fennah, said: 'I never imagined that a chance meeting with Helen Forrester would lead to a friendship followed by a 30 year theatre journey, bringing to life her fascinating story during her time in Liverpool.'


Rob added: 'By The Waters Of Liverpool is the final chapter and this particular show features storylines from all her four best-selling volumes of autobiography, Twopence To Cross The Mersey, Liverpool Miss, By The Waters Of Liverpool and Lime Street At Two. That way, people unfamiliar with her books will get a complete picture of her life. It’s the last Helen Forrester show we’ll be doing so I urge everyone to come and see it. They won’t be disappointed'.

Reviews For 2023's By The Waters Of Liverpool Tour, Include:

The tour has received fabulous rave reviews across the country:

  • “It was a beautiful piece of theatre” - North West End.

  • “A hugely entertaining show from such a talented cast, and so very, very emotional” - Stageside UK.

  • “An uplifting account of how one ordinary Merseyside girl fought to keep her dreams alive and inspired so many in the process” - Wirral Globe.

  • “A beautifully heartbreaking depiction of Helen's early life that is a crucial piece of social history for Liverpool” - The Liverpudlian.

  • “Great nostalgia and romanticism of a by-gone era, lovingly crafted with care by all involved. This is a must-see show” - The Reviews Hub.


The team behind By The Waters Of Liverpool and the earlier stage productions of Twopence To Cross The Mersey – which premiered in Liverpool almost 30 years ago – have announced this will be the ‘final chapter’ of Helen’s story on stage. Making it the last chance for fans of Helen’s million-selling books to experience her story first-hand.


By The Waters Of Liverpool has sold more than a million books. It is set in the 1930s after Helen’s father went bankrupt during the Depression. Her family were forced to leave behind the nannies, servants and comfortable middle-class life in the South West of England. The Forrester’s chose Liverpool to rebuild their shattered lives. They were in for a terrible shock. Taken out of school to look after her young siblings, Helen is sick of being treated as an unpaid slave and begins a bitter fight with her parents for the right to go out to work and make her own way in life. But by 1939 and with Britain on the verge of war Helen, now aged 20, has still never been kissed by a man. But things start looking up for her when she meets a tall strong seaman and falls in love.


The cast features a line-up of Liverpool favourite actors with Lynn Francis, Daniel Taylor, Lynne Fitzgerald, Joe Owens, Samantha Alton, and Roy Carruthers. Joining them are Coronation Street’s Tom Roberts, Emmerdale’s Joe Gill and newcomer Emma Mulligan.


The nine-strong cast play more than 50 characters between them – just Emma Mulligan portrays the one single character throughout as Helen Forrester.

Co-Producer, Bill Elms, commented: 'We are now halfway through the UK tour, and it’s been a pleasure to see how well the show is being received all over the country from audiences and critics alike. Helen’s books were sold nationally and internationally and its always a surprise to see how many people still remember and love the books. Now they can see their favourite book jump from the page to the stage at their local theatre.'


Bill added: 'There is nothing like the Liverpool City Region venues though and we are delighted to be coming home next week for the next leg of the tour visiting St Helens, Southport and finally ending the tour in New Brighton at the end of October.'


Writer and producer Rob Fennah enjoyed a long friendship with Helen Forrester since adapting her first book Twopence To Cross The Mersey in 1994. Helen travelled from her home in Edmonton, Canada, to see first-hand her story brought to life on stage.


Prior to author’s death in 2011, Rob and Helen often discussed the possibility of another play to conclude her life story. By The Waters Of Liverpool is the result of many conversations and numerous letters between the author and playwright and, as such, the show is packed with provenance.


By The Waters Of Liverpool is an adaptation of Helen Forrester’s third autobiography and the final chapter of Helen’s life in Liverpool during the Great Depression. It also features sizeable chunks from Helen’s earlier book Liverpool Miss, flashbacks to Twopence To Cross The Mersey, along with a storyline from Helen’s fourth autobiography Lime Street At Two.


Helen’s literary achievements were further celebrated in 2020 to mark her 100th Birthday when an iconic Blue Plaque was unveiled at the Forrester family home in Hoylake, located in the Liverpool City Region's Borough of Wirral, a place which featured heavily in her work.


Written by Rob Fennah.

Directed by Gareth Tudor Price.

Produced by Pulse Stage Productions and Bill Elms.

Fully Endorsed by the Helen Forrester Estate.


Tickets For The Floral Pavilion In New Brighton

You can purchase tickets for By The Waters Of Liverpool at the Floral Pavillion in New Brigtion now for Wednesday the 25th to Sunday the 29th of October, including additional Matinee Performances.

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