Great War Theatre

The Arnold Bennett Society website records that Bennett (27 May 1867 – 27 March 1931) was born Enoch Arnold Bennett in Hanley. He left the Potteries for London at the age of 21. After the publication of his first novel, 'A Man From The North', in 1902 he never returned to live permanently in the Potteries, but his early life there inspired the ‘Five Towns’ novels and short stories for which he became famous. In London he worked first as a solicitor’s clerk and then for the periodical 'Woman', before giving up salaried employment to become a full-time writer. He later moved to France and married a Frenchwoman, Marguerite Soulie. 'The Old Wives’ Tale', considered his masterpiece, was published in 1908 and written while the couple was living in Fontainebleau. They returned to England and Bennett turned his talents to the war effort, with propaganda, committee work and a significant post in the Ministry of Information. After the War his fiction was almost exclusively set in London and 'Riceyman Steps' won the recently established James Tait Black Memorial Prize in 1924. Bennett’s marriage failed and he formed a relationship with actress Dorothy Cheston with whom had one child, Virginia. He died at home in his Marylebone apartment of typhoid in 1931. He was a very prolific writer. His diverse output included over 30 novels (serious and popular), short stories, plays, poetry, journalism, theatre and libretti. Some of his novels were made into a successful television series broadcast in 1976 under the title ‘Clayhanger’. His most successful plays were 'Milestones' (1912) and 'The Great Adventure' (1913).

Gender: Male

Date of Birth: 27 May 1867

Served in the armed forces? No

Scripts associated with Arnold Bennett

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