Big Issue Foundation

Radio play ‘Unknown’ raises money Big Issue vendors

Unknown is a new audio performance written for radio, dramatising the story of one young person’s journey from an abusive childhood to a life of homelessness on the streets of Bath – one of the most affluent cities in the UK.

The radio play, which was influenced by the lives of Big Issue vendors in Bath, was launched at Green Park to an invited audience including award winning film director Ken Loach. Originally produced by Roughhouse Theatre the audio play is now being broadcast across the UK by radio and theatre outlets including The Belgrade Theatre Coventry, The Greenwich Theatre London, Salford Arts, Theatre Royal Bath and South Street Studio Reading.

‘Unknown’ was written by Dougie Blaxland with the assistance of Chris Taylor a member of the sales and outreach team at The Big Issue in Bath and six people based in the area who have recent experience of homelessness, including Big Issue vendors Ian Duff, Lloyd Rusdale and Anthony Williams who collaborated with Dougie on developing the script.

Ian Duff said “It was quite a poignant story. I was quite touched by it. What really hit me was the statistics and the amount of unknown deaths on the streets. It’s quite frightening because and that is what saddened me the most.”

The drama has already received rave reviews from critics and listeners, including the acclaimed film director Ken Loach.

“Harrowing stories eloquently told-all the more shocking because we know them to be true.” Ken Loach, Acclaimed Film Director

“A powerful and very special even. Through the performance it becomes so painfully clear how whole lives are destroyed without people caring to listen, to understand, to engage, to heal.” Wera Hobhouse, MP for Bath

“I was lucky to be present at the reading of the play at the Ronda. It is very thought provoking.  The Play works totally as dramatic theatrical piece. Well done to all participants.” Charles Beer, Manager Green Park Station.

The play is available to listen to for free, however the creators are asking listeners to donate the money they would usually have paid to watch the show to support Big Issue vendors.

You can listen to the performance in full here: https://www.roughhousetheatre.com/unknown

Bigger Issues need bigger solutions

Big Issue Group is creating new solutions through enterprise to unlock opportunities for the 14.5 million people living in poverty to earn, learn and thrive. Big Issue Group brings together our media and investment initiatives as well as a diverse and pioneering range of new solutions, all of which aim to dismantle poverty by creating opportunity. Learn how you can change lives today.

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