Follow Me

The Bread & Roses Theatre

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19:30 - 21:00 (doors at 19:30)
£8 - £11

Ruth Ellis was the last woman in Britain to be hanged by the most ‘decorated’ executioner of our time, Albert Pierrepoint. Ruth Ellis was my grandmother.

She shot her lover in Hampstead in a fit of rage. She purposely offered no defence and left the court with no other choice but to hang her. The case received a huge public backlash because she was portrayed as the working class innocent blonde, having been terribly miss-treated by the cheating spoilt public schoolboy.

The job was given to Albert Pierrepoint. A landlord by day and an executioner by night. A man who lives by the rules and believes in order. A man who believes in justice and upholding the law. Having been commissioned with the job of hanging Nazi’s in Germany following WW2, he returned to the UK where his loyalty to the state is tested. My grandmother was the last person he hanged.

“Follow Me takes us into the worlds of the hanged and the hangman in the moments leading to Ellis' execution. Explaining her motives yet showing no remorse, she draws us into the mindset of one driven to commit the ultimate crime. Pierrepoint, the ultimate professional, but one who increasingly feels the moral pressure and growing public distaste for capital punishment and now plagued by doubts about the value of his life's work and the craft he has mastered, explains the mechanisms, both physical and psychological, of being a pub landlord by night and a public executioner by day”.

I saw the play at Edinburgh Festival by pure chance in 2007. I was walking back after a matinee performance and saw a sign which read ‘Follow Me’. I thought that this was fantastic marketing and so I followed. To my surprise, I ended up at a pub next to the apartment block I was staying in. I walked in, took my place and watched the last hours of my grandmother’s life. Although this was rather emotional, I left feeling somewhat confused. I had been brought up to understand right from wrong. I couldn’t form a solid opinion. Yes, she was a relation (but I never met her) but she had committed a terrible murder. In its simplest terms, Pierrepoint was the goody and Ruth the baddy. But I haven’t been able to decide whether hanging her was right or wrong? Even Pierrepoint himself towards the end isn’t sure!

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The Bread & Roses Theatre
68 Clapham Manor Street, London, SW4 6DZ

Nearest station:
Clapham North (Tube)


1. The ticket holder voluntarily assumes all risks and danger incidental to the event for which the ticket is issued, whether occurring prior, during or after the event. The ticket holder voluntarily agrees that the management, venue, event participants, DesignMyNight (WFL Media Ltd) and all of their respective agents, officers, directors, owners and employers are expressly released by the ticket holder from any claims arising from such causes.
2. Tickets are issued subject to the rules and regulations of the venue.
3. Please check your tickets, as mistakes cannot always be rectified.
4. Occasionally, events are cancelled or postponed by the promoter, team, performer or venue for a variety of reasons. If the event is cancelled, please contact us for information on receiving a refund from the responsible party. If the event was moved or rescheduled, the venue or promoter may set refund limitations. It is your responsibility to ascertain the date and time of any rearranged event.
5. Latecomers may not be admitted.
6. We regret that tickets cannot be exchanged or refunded after purchase.
7 Tickets are sold subject to the venue or promoter's right to alter or vary the programme due to events or circumstances beyond its control without being obliged to refund monies or exchange tickets.
8. If this ticket is re-sold or transferred for profit or commercial gain by anyone other than the promoter, venue management, DesignMyNight or one of their authorised sub-agents, it will become voidable and the holder may be
refused entry to or ejected from the venue.
9. The venue may operate a No Smoking Policy.
10. The promoter, venue management and DesignMyNight accept no responsibility for any personal property.
11. Cast and creative team are subject to change and any changes provide no justification for possible refunds.

(5 reviews) Show Hide all

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Great play. Found myself absorbed in it from start to finish. It also made you think beyond the end of the play contemplating the moral issues that the play drew upon. Incredible performances from the actors. Huw visited The Bread & Roses Theatre on 11 May 2016
27 Jun 2016 by Huw

Fantastic and very haunting performance by both actors. The claustrophobic space heightened the tension evident in the play. Ian Pring was utterly believable as the humane hangman as was Ann Schutte as the doomed Ruth Ellis. Gregor visited The Bread & Roses Theatre on 16 Jun 2016
21 Jun 2016 by Gregor

Fabulous, intense but interesting and enjoyable. The two cast members were believable as the characters and the story of the final hours was gripping, even though you knew the outcome! Jo visited The Bread & Roses Theatre on 10 Jun 2016
21 Jun 2016 by Jo

Brilliant performances from both actors, especially Ann. It was not an easy subject to tackle and to convey attitudes and morals from over 60 years ago which are alien to us today, and to some present-day people almost offensive, in a sympathetic manner. Deserves to be in the West End. Peter visited The Bread & Roses Theatre on 13 May 2016
20 Jun 2016 by Peter

A great play with two very strong actors. A little uncomfortable at times but that's to be expected with the subject matter covered in this play. Highly recommend this play. Lisa visited The Bread & Roses Theatre on 12 Jun 2016
19 Jun 2016 by Lisa

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