The Wrecker

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For other uses, see Wrecker (disambiguation).

The Wrecker is a British play, written in 1924 by Arnold Ridley and Bernard Merivale, and filmed in 1928-29.[1][2] Much later Ridley played Private Godfrey in Dad's Army.[3]

The play is about an old engine driver who thinks his engine is malevolent and self-aware.[4] The finale is a huge train wreck using elaborate stage special-effects as per The Ghost Train, an earlier and more famous play by Ridley. The play ran for 165 performances at St. Martin's Lane Theatre.

The play was adapted as a film under the same title released in 1929.[5] It featured a spectacular crash between a passenger train and a Foden steam lorry stuck on a level crossing. The scene was filmed at Herriard on the Basingstoke and Alton Light Railway, in one take, and destroyed both the steam wagon and the SECR F1 Class locomotive.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Blood on the Stage, 1925-1950". 
  2. ^ "The Wrecker (1929)". BFI. 
  3. ^ "Dad's Army (1971) - BFI". BFI. 
  4. ^ Christopher Fowler (21 May 2011). "Invisible Ink: No 78 - Arnold Ridley". The Independent. 
  5. ^ Hal Erickson. "The Wrecker (1929) - - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related - AllMovie". AllMovie. 
  6. ^ Mitchell, Vic; Smith, Keith (1984). Branch Lines to Alton. Midhurst, West Sussex: Middleton Press. ISBN 0906520118. 

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