Pierce Egan's renowned 19th-century comic novel adapted by Dan Tetsell is a rollicking real tour of the sprawling post-Regency metropolis in the years before the Victorians turned up and made everything boring.
Comedy drama showing the 'fast life' of Regency London, starring Mark Gatiss, Greg Wise and James Bachman, and Geoffrey McGivern as Pierce Egan.
We travel through London town all in the company of garrulous author Pierce Egan, cocksure urbanite Corinthian Tom, his naive Somerset cousin Jerry Hawthorn and their drunken compatriot Bob.
Tom and Jerry visit a cockfight, try to buy a horse, meet a sporting legend and lay a wager on which is better, London or the West Country. Meanwhile, garrulous narrator Pierce Egan takes literary critic William Hazlitt to his first boxing match. The lads of Regency London drink with the lower orders in the East End and generally get up to mischief around town.
When Pierce Egan falls on hard times, will his adventures help him make his fortune or will this be the end of the trio's life together?
When first published the popularity of Pierce Egan's book amounted to a craze, as society tried to guess the real life characters featuring in the tales. The celebrity obsession of the Regency period is depicted in this cleverly adapted comedy.
In Training for a Swell
High and Low Life
The Show Folks
An End to Life in London
Pierce Egan - Geoffrey McGivern
Corinthian Tom - Greg Wise
Jerry Hawthorn - Mark Gatiss
Bob Logic - James Bachman
Old Hawthorn - Christopher Douglas
Corinthian Kate - Amanda Abbington
Mrs Belcher / Fishwife - Laura Shavin
Mr Primefit / Sir Richard / Actor - Dave Lamb
Plausible Jack/ Jarvey / George Sala - Ben Graves
William Hazlitt/Tom Cribb/ Hustle - Alex MacQueen
Mrs Egan - Alys Torrence
Lady Wanton - Morwenna Banks
Fanny - Margaret Cabourn Smith
Theodore Holt / Dick Trifle- Giles Taylor
Mr Jonah / Pickpocket - Neil Edmond
Written by Pierce Egan
Adapted by Dan Tetsell
Music: Ben Walker
Producer: Tilusha Ghelani
First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 1st May, 8th May, 15th May, 22nd May, 29th May, 5th June 2006