It's Only Me, Boys!
Verity Productions



50 mins

The Guildhall

Fri at 19:15

Sat at 14:00

Sun at 19:00

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It's Only Me, Boys!
Verity Productions

Exeter-born Theodore Bayley Hardy went to the First World War as a Chaplain in 1916 - at the age of 52.

"It's only me, boys!" he would whisper in the dark as he reached the trenches at the front of the allied lines.

He would bring supplies (most importantly, cigarettes) to these young men and he would sit with them, talk with them, read with them and sometimes pray with them. If they were injured he would lay with them until help arrived. If they were killed he would stay with them until their bodies could be retrieved.

He became one of the most highly decorated non-combatants in the war, recognised with the three most prestigious awards for bravery: Military Cross, Distinguished Service Order and Victoria Cross, the latter of which was presented to him in person by King George V, a few miles behind the lines.

Despite many offers to come home (as Chaplain to the King), Hardy stayed with his men. He was wounded on 11 October 1918 and died from his wounds one week later, just three weeks before the Armistice.

This is his story.

Writer and performer David Balcombe brings this play for its first public performances at TheatreFest. He looks forward to developing the play further in the light of the experience in Barnstaple.