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HG Wells

Ann Veronica

Episode 1

Duration: 1 hour

First broadcast: on BBC Radio 4 FMLatest broadcast: on BBC Radio 4 Extra

Spirited and fiercely intelligent, Ann Veronica is a 21st Century woman in an Edwardian Hobble skirt. She runs away from her stiflingly conventional home and her domineering father to make a fresh start in London. A lively and surprising story; not least because it's created by H.G. Wells.

Ann Veronica …. Amy Hoggart
Mr Stanley …. Geoffrey Whitehead
H.G. Wells …. Bill Nighy
Manning …. Toby Hadoke
Aunt Molly …. Ruth Alexander-Rubin
Constance …. Emily Pithon
Miss Miniver …. Victoria Brazier
Ramage …. Jonathan Keeble
Teddy …. Ashley Margolis

Produced and directed by Pauline Harris
Dramatised by Ellen Dryden

The storytelling is witty and ironic and Ann Veronica caused a scandal in its time because of the feminist sensibilities of the heroine and also because of the affair Wells was having with Amber Reeves, the woman who inspired the novel's eponymous character. This is a relatively unknown and unexpected novel by Wells. The Spectator described Ann Veronica as a "poisonous book..." Although unlikely to offend modern listeners, this novel addresses many feminist versus femininity issues that are still relevant today.

Amy Hoggart who stars as Ann Veronica is a stand-up comedian and actress, best known for starring in Almost Royal, a faux-reality show on BBC America. She portrays a low-ranking heir to the British throne, Poppy Carlton. Other credits include Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (2016) and Crackanory (2013).

She is the daughter of renowned journalist Simon Hoggart, niece of Times television critic Paul Hoggart, and granddaughter of sociologist Richard Hoggart. Amy attended Cambridge University,and was a member of the Footlights, whilst reading English.

The novel deals with the early stages of what is arguably the most important social development of the 20th C. the education and financial and sexual liberation of women. And the fact is that, nearly a hundred years later, the problem of women who want to marry, have children and pursue a liberating career, is still not easy to solve. Wells makes a good case for freer sexual relationships, but Amber Reeves - and later Rebecca West - were the ones whose lives were changed - by bearing and bringing up a child by him.

Geoffrey Whitehead plays Ann's father, Mr. Stanley - most recent credits include Geoffrey in Not Going Out as Lee Mack's disapproving father-in-law, and Mr. Newbold in Still Open All Hours. His career spans decades and he has appeared in a huge range of television, film and radio roles. In the theatre, he has played at the Shakespeare Globe, St. Martin's Theatre and Bristol Old Vic.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in February 2017. Show less


HG Wells - The Narrator:
Bill Nighy
Ann Veronica Stanley:
Amy Hoggart
Henry Devas
Emily Pithon
Miss Miniver:
Victoria Brazier
HG Wells
Ellen Dryden

About this data

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