Nabbed a copy of this earlier, sure to find it upsetting. Might be my eyesight, but didn't spot a copy in either of the NEL visual guides, which translates as .... Justin, you'll have to compile a Volume III.
Jeremy Sandford - Down And Out In Britain (NEL, Nov. 1972. Originally Peter Owen, 1971)
Blurb: Wearing a tattered old great coat and a beard, Jeremy Sandford recently took a journey into 'the bilges of society’. He stayed in seedy common lodging houses, kip houses and mingled with down and outs. ln this controversial book he relates his individual experiences with dossers, drunks, meths drinkers, drug addicts, and a host of others who have fallen foul of society. This book is a record of the extensive research collected by the author for his successful TV play "Edna, The Inebriate Woman," and other plays.
From the first, I set myself against "literature"; the story was the thing, and no amount of style could persuade me to select a story that lacked genuine, unadulterated horror. For those who wanted something high-brow there was plenty.
Another translation error occurs... Edna, the Inebriate Woman was clearly a work of serious, important social drama, which makes completely unacceptable the loud, rude guffaws I uttered upon reading that title.
The photo of the author with, perhaps, another inebriate lady is its own work of art... work of a very exalted calibre indeed...
The filmed drama features one of the few acting roles (as a tramp) of British actor Vivian MacKerrell, the real-life inspiration for the character Withnail in Withnail and I.
Actress Pat Hayes won a BAFTA for her work in this. Reviews suggest this was a less rose-tinted view of the kind of material (based, albeit, on personal experience) Alan Bennett went on to mine with his Lady in the Van sequence.
A further note from the TV Cream site:
A deservedly famous entry in the Play for Today canon, this mammoth production gained an audience of some 9¼ million on its first showing, an unqualified success. In the manner of his earlier sensation Cathy Come Home, writer Jeremy Sandford took his subject incredibly seriously, living the life of a vagrant for weeks at a time as research, as detailed in the play’s companion volume, Down and Out in Britain. It was intended as a standard studio production, to be part of a trilogy along with Till the End of the Plums, about hostile local attitudes to a gypsy settlement, and Arlene, about an unmarried mother. The two subsequent plays were scrapped, however, after it was decided to “open up” Edna’s story into real-life locations, which sent the budget spiralling way beyond the usual PfT allocation (and draining cash from subsequent productions in the season).
This says that Pat Hayes was best known for her work on the Benny Hill Show. She also appeared in such productions as The Terrornauts and The Witches and the Grinnygog.
What I presume to be a 22 minute clip from Edna is on Youtube.
In case you hadn't gathered, that's Patricia Hayes on the cover of the book with Sandford. I remember the stir Edna caused, and seeing it some fifteen to twenty years later it was still pretty hard hitting. The BBC did real in those days, not their liberal Hampstead version of real, despite the fact that they were more conservative up top in those days. Explain that one, 'cause I can't.
TV and film sites will never really reflect Pat Hayes' talent as she was one of those stage actors who did the TV and films mostly for a bit of jam so they could do the low-paid bread and butter stage work they loved, and where the art was. She was highly thought of by her contemporaries, which is usually a good indicator.
Her son, Richard O'Callaghan, started out as the ineffectual young man in the later Carry On's, and is now (good grief!) 77, and still at it. Google him - he doesn't half look like his mum now! (I'd post an image but I can never get the hang of it!)