Peter Gill


Author of books for adults, Scriptwriter

Available for:
Interview
Talk
Workshop
After dinner speaking
Commission


Website: http://www.petegill.com

Contact: Email:
Telephone: 07702 253638

Audiences:
Adults, 11-13 (Key stage 3), 14-16 (Key stage 4), 11-16 (Key stages 3 and 4), 6th Form and college


Details

Peter Gill - Writer, Director, Actor

I can offer several talks or performances (musical if required!). If I'm not touring theatres I am usually engaged for after dinner performances, lectures or educational performances in schools with relation to my plays about the First World War.

In recent years my main writing and research interest has been the Great War - ignited by reading Sebastian Faulks' book Birdsong, it was then fuelled by a coach tour of the battlefields of The Western Front. Ever since I have held a keen interest in the subject of the First World War and its subsequent impact on our social history. One of the first effects of this newly found passion was for me to form The Cheltenham and Gloucester Branch of The Western Front Association - an organisation whose purpose is to educate about the war and to remember those of all sides who took part. I still play an active part in the branch and remain its Chairman.

My first book (a photographic history of Cheltenham during the Second World War) was published in 1994 and I have had several local history type books published since - and even was the ghost writer for Phil Cool's (comedian and impressionist of the 1980s) autobiography. But in 2007 I wrote my first play with a Great War subject - Talbot House - a home from home. This play tells the true story of the house in the Belgium town of Poperinge which became, quite literally, a haven in hell for the soldiers of the British Army. Run by a diminutive but forceful chaplain named Phillip 'Tubby' Clayton, the house was open to all regardless of rank or religion and all were treated equally. Men went to Talbot House (which became universally known by the Army Signallers' code of TocH)  to meet friends, read a book, receive ministry, play cards or simply to get some peace and quiet. In Talbot House, men could, for just a while forget that there was a war going on. After the war, when servicemen began returning to Britain to find that it wasn't a country 'fit for heroes' as they had been promised, Tubby Clayton decided that he wanted the spirit of Talbot House to live on and so he formed a network of hostels that welcomed anyone who needed a place to rest or something to eat. That network became known as the TocH Movement. Talbot House - a home from home is still touring the country's theatres and has now also been made into a radio dramatisation.

In 2014 I wrote Meet Tommy Atkins in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War. The character of 'Tommy' had been in the back of my mind since my days in drama lessons at school - an ordinary man who was caught up in an extraordinary time, someone who perhaps you wouldn't look twice at in the street, but who experienced far more than most ever would. After the First World War there were millions of 'Tommys' - ordinary men trying to return to ordinary lives - some of them were able to cope, others were not. I feel privileged in being able to portray 'my' Tommy and to remind audiences just how much was given by so many to ultimately give us the country we live in today. In the play Tommy, when referring to the Welfare State, will declare that it 'took another war to seal the deal, but we started it all'.

As well as in Meet Tommy Atkins and Talbot House - a home from home, I can be seen touring the country in a variety of other theatrical productions which include: An Evening with Anita Harris (as Musical Director), several one man shows featuring the music of other heroes of mine such as Tom Lehrer and Noel Coward, and rock 'n' roll shows which include A Night of Orbison, The Jerry Lee Lewis Story and Rock 'n' Roll Paradise - in the latter two of which I play the role of Jerry Lee Lewis.

You can also find me Facebook (PeterGillMusician) and Twitter (@petegill) or visit 

Books
I have written 8 books, 3 plays and several scripts. Examples of which are as follows:
Cheltenham at War (isbn:9781845884109)
A photographic appraisal of Cheltenham's Second World War experiences
View in Amazon
Cheltenham Races (isbn:9780750915502)
A photographic history of the racing heritage of horse racing in Cheltenham.
View in Amazon
Phil Cool - Stand Up Chameleon
The autobiography of the impressionist and comedian star of the 1980s
View in Amazon
Cheltenham's Music (isbn:9780750946179)
A photographic history of Cheltenham's extensive music heritage.
View in Amazon
Organisations:
Chairman Cheltenham & Gloucester Branch Western Front Association
Musicians Union
Director Beyond Eternity Promotions Ltd

Other search criteria:

Genres:
History and Biography

Book Type:
Non fiction for adults

Keywords:
History, First World War, Plays, Educational Performance, Cheltenham, Racing, Music, Tom Lehrer, Piano, Gloucestershire