The cast has been announced for Sidney Fox’s Crime, playing at Above The Stag from 20 April, which tells the story of Sidney Harry Fox, a rent boy who slept with the great and the good, committed numerous bank frauds and was charged in 1929 with the murder of his mother in a Margate hotel room.
But did Home Office pathologist Sir Bernard Spilsbury lie in order to hang a gay man for murder? This story of an extraordinary real life murder case is written by Taggart creator Glenn Chandler.
Mark Curry will play Fox’s barrister J. D. Cassels. Known from much-loved children’s TV shows including Blue Peter, Mark has starred in the West End in Wicked and The Woman in Black, and has had roles in Hollyoaks, Doctors and Last of the Summer Wine.
Sebastian Calver will play Sidney Harry Fox and Amanda Bailey plays Rosaline Fox.
In 1929 Fox was a con man and thief, but he was devoted to his elderly mother Rosaline. Together they travelled the country, staying in hotels without paying, while Sidney tapped wealthy aristocratic clients for funds. With the police on their trail, they booked room 66 at the Metropole Hotel, Margate, homeless and without luggage.
It was the era of flappers, big jazz bands and the Wall Street crash. On the night of the crash, Sidney rushed downstairs to say their room was on fire. On the bed lay his mother. An inquest recorded a verdict of death by misadventure and she was quickly buried.
When it was discovered that Sidney had insured her life, he was arrested and Rosaline Fox was exhumed. The evidence was purely circumstantial, until Sir Bernard Spilsbury, the great pathologist who was a celebrity of his day, and known to despise homosexuals, discovered at the autopsy something that changed the whole nature of the case. Even today it remains one of the most controversial pieces of evidence ever put forward in a court of law.
Sidney Fox’s Crime is at Above The Stag 20th April – 7th May 2022.