street in Swarrell. Norah, Rita, Ada, Wilma, Thelma
and other girls.
It’s not over yet. After the lads, you
’em all back down to the goods yard. Tell
Swarrell’ll not be expecting ’em. Hey,
Come ’ere! Make sure the Swarrell lot stick around.
and the Halden girls go off towards Halden. Thelma and the
Swarrell girls go to the goods yard. Ada and Rita stay with
we’ll see some fun.
cigarettes. Her friends cluster round to light up.
We’ll have to think of some way to get Little Willie and the
Dragons into the fight.
catches their attention.
It’s that old man.
slinking along the street. He stops when he sees the girls
and starts to sneak away.
Let’s get him!
forward and surround Old Jake.
What’s an old man like you doing playing with a gang of boys?
He’s a queer!
I’m an old man! Don’t hurt me!
I’m an old
man! Oh, me heart! I can feel it going!
Time to worry is when it stops. What d’ya go round
with them lads for?
Nothing. O-o-oh me heart!
know what we wanna see, don’t ya?
I’m an old man.
wanna see them lads getting stripped.
That’s what he
wants to see an’all, innit?
Hey, were you there when they stripped Nails Palmer?
No. My son was there though. He
your son Sid Thatcher?
Yeah. Heard of him, have you? He’s a
hero, he is. Takes after me.
I heard it, he’s a poof.
Sid Thatcher’s father?
Yeah. Jake Thatcher’s the name. They call
me Old Jake. They all
all the lads.
They know you in Halden too – and we’re
gonna take you back there.
Ada and Rita:
They’re gonna have some fun with you,
Ada and Rita:
No! Me heart won’t stand it!
I’m an old man. You’ll be had up for
S’orright. S’Tommo an’ them.
and other Halden lads.
Hey, Tommo. Look what we’ve got for you.
The lads are
gathering down at the goods yard. You could use his
for a banner!
II, SCENE 2
Swarrell. Sid, mooching alone, hears voices nearby.
Voice of Jake:
Dad! They’re murdering him.
Voice of Jake:
I’m an old man! Help!
I’ll go for help.
turns away and is bowled over by Stan and others charging to rescue
Jake. He picks himself up and stands listening.
his companions return, bringing Jake. Sid hurries forward.
Dad! Are you all right? I thought I heard him
shouting for help.
Halden lads had him.
Girls! Horrible! Let’s go home.
Yeah. All right, Dad. I’ll take you home.
No. We need you. King wants everybody down by the
engine sheds. He says they’ll come again.
me dad …?
He’ll be all right with us. Bring him
along. He’ll be safe enough at the engine sheds.
go with them unwillingly.
II, SCENE 3
girls are looking down from the viaduct onto the goods yard.
raucous Halden charge pushes the Swarrell lines back in disarray.
Yeah! Boys are stupid. You can make ’em
haven’t taken anybody’s pants off yet, though.
Don’t worry. Things are just starting to liven up.
It’s not fair. Our lads are outnumbered.
You lot have been helping Halden.
They’ll have to call for the Black Dragons, then.
That’s what I’m
II, SCENE 4
We’ll have to get La’al Willie to help.
Yeah. That’s the way. Bring up
His lads’ll be fresh. They’ll tek
surprise, like we did that time in the Italian campaign. Near
Monte Cassino it was. The Jerries had dug in, and we
move aside and leave him chuntering to himself.
Think he’d help?
Yeah. Against Halden? Course he would.
Send Sid. He’d do owt for Sid.
II, SCENE 5
goods yard. Little Willie and his Dragons, Ken and Sid.
I don’t care if they strip King and parade him round the town
his shirt – in fact I hope they do, and you can tell him that!
The only way we’ll join the battle is if King joins the
Dragons. So you can tell him to come along for initiation if
guffaw and cheer.
II, SCENE 6
Getting’ dark. Reckon they’ll call it a
They’re regrouping for another thrust. Jerries was
doing that. You wanna put out sentries and send out spies on
recce. I’d go meself but I’m and old
joints aren’t what they used to be. No good going
when your joints keep creaking.
We’ll send Sid.
Yeah. Inborn skill and that. Handed down from
son. Almost as good as sending Jake himself. Better
Sid’s still young, his joints don’t
creak. Just the
sort of job for the hero who captured Nails Palmer, don’t you
think, eh Jake?
Sid hasn’t had anything much to do yet. I mean,
we’re not using him properly.
leave him alone, Ronno. I’ll go.
’em both go. If there’s two
they’ll have more of a chance.
II, SCENE 7
I’ll go if I can have La’al Willie’s
colours, whoever takes ’em!
Yeah, course you can. All we need to know is where they are
if they’ve got any ambushes laid. When we know
POW! They won’t know what hit them.
II, SCENE 8
terrain. Darkness. Sid and Stan creeping
A movement alerts them and they freeze. Dolly creeps
Stan signs to Sid and they follow him as he crawls along spying.
takes off his jacket and hides behind a pile of rubble. Sid
too. Dolly peers at the Swarrell lines, obviously counting,
turns and moves down the line. He is clearly visible in the
moonlight to Ken and Sid. As Dolly draws level Stan
springs. He muffles Dolly’s head in his jacket and
him down. Sid jumps in to help and they overpower Dolly.
him tell where they are. Save us going.
Orright, you! What’s your name?
Dolly! Well, little Dolly Daydream, you better tell us
we want to know, or it’ll be Dolly’s nightmare from
on. How’d you like to be taken back to the Engine
the Count, eh?
Will ya lemme go if I tell you?
Yeah, but we’ll have your colours.
me kecks! You won’t tek me kecks, will ya?
can keep your kecks – if
you tell us.
II, SCENE 9
It’s getting too dark to see.
Once that cloud’s gone there’ll be a full moon
below is clearly lit.
whips her binoculars to her eyes and watches as Stan and Sid strip
Dolly of his denim jacket, scarf, boots and belt. He departs
stocking feet, shirt and jeans. Norah sighs.
II, SCENE 10
should be helping.
No! I’ve told you. If they want us
to join us. I’m not going near them till they join
Halden could be at the Engine Sheds.
Well … even if they are, we’re not interfering
till I’m ready. We’ll go up onto the
embankment. We can see from there.
II, SCENE 11
Look, Norah! Summat’s happening.
below a sudden Swarrell charge sweeps towards the Halden
position. The Halden lads are overrun and retreat towards the
Hotrod and his gang, the Furies, appear on the Swarrell flank and send
a hail of bricks and stones at the Swarrell youths, who
King and Stan are hit and have to be dragged to safety.
the edge of
the battlefield. Sid is crouching down, hiding.
Suddenly he is surrounded by Halden lads.
There’s one of ’em!
round, looking for an escape route. His name
“SID” is clearly visible on the back of his jacket.
It’s Sid! We’ve got Sid Thatcher!
got Sid Thatcher! We’ve
got Sid Thatcher!
looking down from the viaduct.
Hear that? They’re going to take his trousers off!
battlefield Ken and Ronno lead a rescue party. The Halden
lads are driven off and Sid is rescued unharmed.
lads withdraw to the Engine Sheds.
II, SCENE 12
railway embankment where Little Willie and the Dragons are
clustered. They do not have such a good view of the battle as
girls on the viaduct.
What are they retreating for? They could have driven
into the beck and drowned the sods. Where’s
doesn’t he come and tell us what’s gan on?
II, SCENE 13
Engine Sheds. Swarrell are in a bad way.
A’m an old man! They should get someone to take me
Yeah, bring Willie – him and his Dragons. Fresh
blood! Reinforcements! Turn the table!
Cassino … I shouldn’t be here
doesn’t he bring them?
Tell him if he doesn’t, Halden’ll win.
Some of ’em must care.
Here they come!
the way out back to Willie.
Bring the Dragons!
lads clamber up to defend the Engine Sheds. Jake sinks down
in a corner.
I’m an old man.
II, SCENE 14
girls watch from the viaduct as Halden charge.
we’ll see some fun!
are driven back from the Engine Sheds. Ronno and a few others
marooned on the roof. Tommo and the Wild Bulls clamber up via
some adjacent ruined buildings.
They can’t escape! We’ll get a good view
of this! – We’re going
Norah, Jane and some of the Swarrell girls have
collected a pile of pebbles and rubbish at the point where the viaduct
runs closest to the Engine Sheds. The now let fly with a
fusillade just as the Wild Bulls and their followers reach the
roof. The Halden lads leap around dodging the
Tommo slips and falls from the roof. The Wild Bulls leap down
Ronno and his group triumph. The Wild Bulls and
followers retreat as Swarrell surge around the sheds.
II, SCENE 15
viaduct. Norah and her girls advance on Jane and the Swarrell
What did you do that for? I told you not to stick your nose
in! We’d have had some good fun if it
hadn’t been for
yeah? It’s all right for you to go interfering to
I’m not helping any of ’em! Boys are
you’d’ve listened to me we’d have had the
that lot on the roof.
Yeah, you want the Swarrell lads to lose their pants, but not your
precious Halden lot.
want the pants off all
of them – and I don’t want any more out of you!
Don’t you tell me
Don’t you tell me
what I can do and what I can’t do!
I’m not one of your
gang! I’m from Swarrell!
I’m from Swarrell an’ all, but Norah’s
If we start fighting among ourselves we’ll be as stupid as
I don’t see why it’s always Swarrell that has to
always Swarrell. The one I really
want to see
stripped is that Tommo – King
of the two towns!
I wonder what’s happened to him.
back to look over the parapet.
They’ve attacked again.
Halden lads are swarming up the Engine Sheds. Ronno and his
hurl a last few missiles, then beat a hasty retreat. Led by
and the Wild Bulls, Halden swarm onto and around the Engine
Sheds. Tommo stands triumphantly on the peak of the
great cheer goes up from Halden.
They didn’t take any prisoners – but now the
Dragons will have
to join in.