The Library Theatre: 1967

This page contains a more detailed guide to significant events concerning the Library Theatre, Scarborough, in 1967.


  • With funding restored by Scarborough Town Council, professional theatre resumes at the Library Theatre with a 14 week summer season; the longest summer season yet held at the venue.
  • Appointed by the board of Scarborough Theatre Trust, Rodney Wood is named Director of Productions for the season; Rodney had previously worked with Stephen Joseph. The position is unpaid but includes accommodation for the summer.
  • The search for a new, permanent home for the company begins in earnest this year with attention mainly focused on buildings within Scarborough suitable for conversion to a theatre. One of the first serious contenders is St Paul's Church, next to Scarborough Library.
  • 29 March: Alan Ayckbourn's Relatively Speaking opens at the Duke Of York's Theatre in London; this is the first Library Theatre play to transfer to the West End. A special agreement is made with Alan Ayckbourn's agent that any Ayckbourn play which opens in London within four years of Scarborough, will see the company receive 1% of gross box office receipts for two years.
  • 10 July: The summer season opens with the world premiere of Alan Plater's Hop, Step And Jump.
  • July: A small charge is made for programmes at the Library Theatre for the first time since it opened in 1955; the charge is 6d.
  • 13 July: World premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's The Sparrow; the company includes Robert Powell, the professional stage debut off John Nettles and Alan Ayckbourn's future second wife Heather Stoney.
  • 28 July: Stoke on Trent and North Staffordshire Theatre Trust Ltd is incorporated as a company to run the Victoria Theatre, Stoke-on-Trent. This essentially marks the end of Stephen Joseph's pioneering Studio Theatre Ltd company.
  • 31 August: The Stage reports it has been a record year for audiences at the Library Theatre with capacity running at more than 80% throughout the season.
  • 15 September: Tom Laughton - brother of actor Charles Laughton - joins the board of Scarborough Theatre Trust. Tom plays a key role in trying to locate a new home for the company and was the first to suggest the Claremont building on Castle Road (formerly a print works) as a site suitable for conversion.
  • 18 September: Scarborough Theatre Trust is registered as a charitable trust.
  • 23 September: The Library Theatre company is featured in a BBC radio broadcast of J.B. Priestley's Eden End, directed by Alfred Bradley; the play had been presented at the Library Theatre from 27 July.
  • 5 October: Stephen Joseph dies at Longwestgate, Scarborough, aged 46.
  • 19 November: Scarborough Theatre Trust is told that proposals to convert St Paul's Church into a theatre had been rejected. It is agreed any future home of the theatre "should bear the name of Stephen Joseph."
Click here to go to 1968.

Copyright: Simon Murgatroyd: Please do not reproduce without permission of the copyright holder.