And the play was given a top notch cast with Honeysuckle Weeks of Foyle’s War television fame (Sam Stewart in the first eight seasons) playing Charlotte, the airily derisory then gradually supportive workbench colleague of Charity Wakefield’s pretty young Catherine Donohue; the axis of solidarity swings about throughout the play, and both give highly watchable performances.
So, it's also a play about young women starting out and making waves catches that mood. Catherine’s marriage to Alec Newman’s fleshy, well-moulded construction worker comes under stress and strain, but she takes up more cudgels at work as her radium poisoning is fobbed off with false diagnosis and aspirin prescription.
With help from the others - described at the time as 'disgruntled women' - she effects a change in the law. The girls were sipping small radium-dipped brushes to make them pointed enough for the filigree design work. The foreman assured them this is perfectly safe. Radium is ‘more than OK for you — it’s medicinal’. Catherine finally won her lawsuit in 1938, dying soon afterwards.
Loveday Ingram’s production shows off the neat technical efficiency of the new theatre: Tim Shortall’s stripped, stark design, backed with translucent panelling, is poetically lit by Rob Casey, making metaphorical connections between the night sky, the radium glow and moonlight across the lake.
More about Honeysuckle Weeks can be found here.
Source and source.