First Do No Harm

2014's production

Some more audience feedback on 'First Do No Harm'

'First Do No Harm' by Hilary Spiers


'First Do No Harm' was shortlisted by the Ronald Duncan Playwriting Competition.


Against the backdrop of the suffragist movement and England on the brink of war, Harold and Maud Leggett arrive in a small market town in the Cambridgeshire Fens where Harold is to practise as the town’s only ‘Panel’ doctor, under Lloyd George’s controversial health and welfare reforms. The established medical fraternity, led by the redoubtable Dr Ridgeway, is firmly opposed to the new system and soon Harold and Ridgeway, both combative, both driven by personal ideology, are at loggerheads. The consequences are catastrophic.


Meanwhile, Maud, who has reluctantly left her suffragist colleagues behind in London, befriends Dr Ridgeway’s wife Rachel and is soon unsettling the established mores by questioning the place of women in society. This powerful, fast-moving play by playwright Hilary Spiers dramatises a forgotten corner of history, charting the huge personal and societal cost of establishing a national healthcare service and securing universal suffrage.




Intelligent, dedicated, hard-working, professional, clever, friendly - please perform at the Broadbent Theatre again.


Fantastic play and portable production that gave an entertaining and informative glimpse of real local history highlighting the huge validity of the NHS. Love to see in run in secondary schools to put flesh onto 20 century social history.


Great play and really enjoyed the way it was staged.


Excellent acting and script which led me through a little known history, clever use of props and stage


Excellent use of the stage.Imaginative and effective use of costumes with doubling of roles. Actors were skilful and clear in their character changes.


I thought the simple staging suited the play admirably


Intriguing staging with all four actors on stage throughout and the Ridgeways doubling up in another role - a very enjoyable evening...and instructive too!


An excellent absorbing play superbly acted.


I particularly liked the direction. I liked that fact the actors stayed on stage thoughout. I liked the story and it's implications.


I really enjoyed the debates between husbands and respective wives which were cleverly woven in with the history. Great to see such strong roles for women, giving them a voice about a period that didnt. Loved the set with the striking banners, but felt the poster didnt do the play justice. Well done Tea and Tenacity for continuing to stage new writing and to writer hilary spiers for bravely creating a piece that strikes a chord today with the nhs once again under threat. Good job all.


Excellent live entertainment

I thoroughly enjoyed the play and thought the cast were excellent -


The simple staging worked well and the actors were excellent, particularly the woman who played Maud.


Super play, would have loved an acting role myself, though well done the actors. Commercially good as only 4 hander with clever (small) props only touring set. Good involving drama and very informative, too.


A fascinating account of a real historical event about which I knew nothing. Convincingly cast.


Where can I buy a copy of this play and others by the same playwright???



Reviews available online:



Tour Dates - Completed

'First Do No Harm' West and East Midlands tour dates:


26th July 9pm SPECIAL PERFORMANCE at Birmingham Fest

Blue Orange Theatre, Birmingham -

0121 212 2643


10th September

Stamford Arts Centre -

01780 763203


11th September

Granary Theatre, Wells next the Sea –

01328 710885


12th & 13th September

Blue Orange Theatre, Birmingham -

0121 212 2643


19th September

Watson Studio Bedworth -

024 76643255


20th September

Broadbent Theatre, Wickenby -

01673 885500


27th September

Artrix Studio, Bromsgrove -

01527 577330


30th September

New Theatre, Nottingham -


3rd October

The Angles, Wisbech –

01945 474447