Bolton School Senior Boys

Cricketing Play When The Eye Has Gone at Bolton School

A production of When The Eye Has Gone, a play following the tragic decline of former England and Northamptonshire batsman Colin Milburn, will visit Bolton School on Wednesday 1 March 2017. This new one man show is produced by the Boys’ Division’s resident theatre company Roughhouse Theatre, and was commissioned by The Professional Cricketers’ Association (PCA).

Productions about sport occupy a seldom-filled niche in theatre, and When The Eye Has Gone offers the opportunity for fans of both cricket and drama to enjoy “not only an entertaining night’s theatre but a story that needed to be told” (David Hopps, ESPN Cricinfo) and “a brilliant show whose boundaries extend well beyond the world of cricket” (Sue Gordon, British Theatre Guide).

The action of When The Eye Has Gone is set in the North Briton pub in Newton Aycliffe in County Durham on February 28 1990: the last day of Milburn’s life during his cabaret performance as ‘Jolly Ollie’, the character he had developed to conceal his insecurities and suffering. Milburn, whose brilliant career was cut short by the loss of the sight in his left eye in a car accident in May 1969, died in the North Briton car park aged 48 after he drifted into chronic alcoholism.

The play is by James Graham-Brown, the former Kent and Derbyshire all-rounder turned playwright, written under the penname Dougie Blaxland.

When The Eye Has Gone begins its second national tour at Bolton School, following an initial tour of all eighteen county cricket clubs in November 2016. All county clubs supported the PCA in putting on the play around the country to help current players appreciate the importance of planning for life after cricket.

The performance of When The Eye Has Gone will take place in the School’s Arts Centre at 7.30pm. Tickets are available to members of the public at a cost of £10 (see below for booking details).

A 2pm matinee performance will also take place on the same date for local and regional schools. This will be followed by a Q&A session with the creative team of When the Eye Has Gone.

Miss Naomi Lord, the Boys’ Division Director of Drama, said of the visiting production: “We are delighted to host When The Eye Has Gone. The event presents an opportunity to celebrate our new creative partnership with Roughhouse Theatre, alumni cricketing success and the Drama department’s developing role in the School’s wider pastoral curriculum.”

Throughout the 2016/17 academic year, Roughhouse Theatre will be the Boys’ Division’s theatre company in residence. Boys in all year groups have already begin to work collaboratively with Roughhouse Theatre in full afternoon sessions, focusing on race, democracy and law, exploring theatre techniques and generating material. The theatre company has also been commissioned to produce an original piece of drama based on Year 7 and Year 8 boys’ work towards their Arts Awards. The boys will audition for parts, work with Roughhouse Theatre and finally perform the piece based on their ideas and material in the summer term.


When The Eye Has Gone Booking Details:

Ticket order forms have been distributed to local cricket clubs.
Alternatively, tickets can be purchased over the phone from the School via card payment.
Tickets £10

Telephone Bookings: (01204) 840201
General Enquiries: Naomi Lord (

Performance Details:
1 March 2017, 7.30pm
Bolton School Arts Centre

Click here for further information and reviews on the Roughhouse Theatre website.

When The Eye Has Gone Poster