Detective Inspector Isaac Bird played by Mark-Allan Pilgrim.
Isaac Bird was always going to be a hard character to cast. We needed someone strong willed, ready for the fight, totally unafraid of conflict and a non sufferer of fools, yet with a touch of humility and empathy about him.
Along came Bodmin based actor Mark-Allan Pilgrim. Larger than life, loud, full on with his acting methods and someone who has admitted that the scripts we've given him of late have reduced this gentle giant to tears.
We had our man and hes proven time and time again that he can deliver the character whom we needed to pull the forces of the law together to take the killer to trial.
Being no stranger to playing. a member of the law, he'd recently completed a tour where he'd played the part of Wyatt Earp on stage.
Mark is a committed actor whose talent simply oozes when in front of the camera.
He's been here since day one, and is among the last characters to wrap.
I trained for the stage the classical way at The Hub Theatre School of Cornwall, graduating in the mid 90’s.
I have done various genres since, with roles in shows as diverse as The Caucasian Chalk Circle to Arsenic and Old Lace!
This has given me the skills and experience to tackle lots of different parts and my part in “...Lucy...” could possibly be my best performance to date.
That’s down to the writing, the ensemble cast and, ultimately, the VERY little known story of dear Lucy Sands.
“Don’t forget me.”
Mr Maynard Harrison is played by Alex Sicking.
After almost a years search and constant advertising for the male star of the film, Maynard. We finally cast Alex 2 days before the very final days shoot in the old still original Victorian courtroom of Tavistock.
The very final day we had left open to us shoot, before the courts were closed down for over 18 months for a complete renovation and refurbishment of them to become a local community attraction.
Without hesitation Alex and his family drove down from London to make his debut.
Maynard is a complex character, The son of the iron works manager, hailing from an upwardly growing middle class family. Hes cold, distant and arrogant. Incredibly calculated with the ability to turn his emotions on to play the onlooker.
A typical unassuming young man on there outside but inside lurks more, an entitled individual! Liked by some, despised by others.
With his youthful looks on his side he's a ladies man, has the gift of the gab and likes his whisky and wild nights.
Works hard and plays even harder.
He has an eye for the ladies and this is where his entitlement comes firmly into play.
Emotionally hes an immature wreck, the only son of the Harrison household. A hardworking and honest family who are one of the backbone employers of the town. Definitely mothered too much as a child and is used to getting whatever he wants!
Even if that means reverting to a childlike tantrum to get it. which becomes his undoing!
Mr Robert Moncrieff is played by Max Brandt.
Robert was the man who discovered the body of Lucy on the 1st March (the first day of spring) whilst he was breaking stones to mettle the winter ravages to the main road at the Northside.
Max threw himself into the role of Robert without any previous auditions, we think he was absolutely the right person to play this troubled yet highly religious character who lived at Brow top in the town.
Although his part in the series is cut short due to the untimely death of Robert a few weeks after the discovery of Lucys body, due to what was reported as shock, Max did this man and his memory justice for his part in Lucys story.
I’ve been involved in theatre for a long time and have only recently started working in film. ‘Lucy’ is one of the ones that has been the most fun on which to work…if ‘fun’ is the right word!
I’ve played Dr. Oldcorn in ‘Killing Lionel’ (Paramour/Sunsetrider Productions – due for international release this year) and ‘A Story for Happy’ (Paramour) which won the Roma International prize for best foreign short.
I’m also a director/producer and writer and the company manager for Inn Theatre, where Shakespeare is the watch-word and I’ve been honoured to play everything from Falstaff to Shylock to Prospero and beyond and have directed Lear and Othello.
It’s been a privilege to work with Steve and all the cast and crew on ‘The Ballad of Lucy Sands…and the journey, it seems, isn’t over yet!
Dr John Highet played by Redruth actor James Care
The first doctor at the scene of the murder, The cool headed doctor Highet was also drafted in via the same methods we've used for this film,
'Come along and prove you're the right person for the job'
He did just that and within minutes we were bowled over by what he was delivering to the camera.
Cool and collective are ways we use to describe him, never mincing words he says exactly what is on his mind and is not afraid to voice his opinions / concerns, especially to those who are close to him.
Being good friends with Dr Alexander Hogg we hear some of those opinions being bandied around in this film. with no punches spared when he has a run in with young Maggie Crannie on a couple of occasions.
The dynamics of all these characters has made this an interesting journey.
Playing Dr Highet has been a priviledge and one of the pieces of work that I am most proud of out of all the roles I have played thus far.
My background has been largely theatre but I've been more steadily working in locally made independant films. Recent credits include "The Inroad" and (WW1 drama) "Coward" where I also worked with young Ruben Wheeler (James Reay of this film).
It's been amazing to work with such skilled people on this film and if all that brilliance shows on the silver screen, then all that time and effort will have been worth every second thats been invested into the telling of Lucys story.
Mr James Reay is played by Ruben Wheeler.
James Read was Lucys Second Cousin - Sarah Stewarts Grandson,
Ruben came to us very early on in the stages of planning this film, he soon took to the role of James Reay and has brought his own flavour and emotion to the role.
Hes a bit of an outsider compared to the other characters his age, has his head firmly planted in his work and brings home his pay to help the family keep their heads above water. A proud young man, who dotes on his immediate and extended family. Choosing not to drink in the town he's unfamiliar with most of Lucys friends and colleagues whom she chooses to surround herself with.
Not one for gossip he keeps himself to himself.
A couple of scenes have been rewritten from Rubens very first scene which was shot on the first day of shooting in mid October 2018,
He returns to set 2 years older and much wiser, to fulfil his journey in Lucys story full circle.
I applied for the role of James Reay in September 2018 not realising at the time what a large scale project it would become.
It’s been a great role for me as I’ve had to push myself emotionally and learn a new accent.
Overall I have had a great time working on set with amazing professional crew and actors. I’m looking forward to returning to set, meeting old friends and seeing the completed series.
Dr Alexander Hogg is played by Stuart Davidson.
What can I say about Dr Alexander Hogg? We had an actor ready to take his part and he bailed two days before the doctor was due to walk on set. Stuart Davidson, from Bovey Tracey, was at my side having lunch with me on the set of Poldark the moment this happened. He was pretty much press-ganged into the role by a few people there who told him that he had the ability to make the character his own. Stuart has not failed to amaze us. His character is a shy, retiring bachelor who is quite a nervous and thoughtful man - the polar opposite of his counterpart, Dr Highet. The dynamics between the two of them on screen are beyond phenomenal. Despite his affluent, middle-class background, his caring and compassion for the lower classes is well documented. As such, his sense of justice and chivalry does get him into some scrapes along the way, mostly to his benefit, as will be revealed in the finished series.
I started out many years ago as a supporting artist for film and TV, appearing in over forty films for German television. After a number of speaking parts I was signed by an agent and went on to appear in TV commercials.
A move into documentaries led to me being cast as King Arthur in John Howe’s documentary series, ‘In Search of the Hobbit’. There followed minor roles as Ben Twilly in Doc Martin and George Warleggan’s valet in Poldark, as well as appearances in Atlantis, Galavant, The White Princess, Casualty, The Coroner, and Broadchurch. Serendipity introduced me to the wonderful part of Alexander Hogg. It is both exciting and a privilege to be involved in a truly unique film that for the first time ever in film or print reveals the untold story of the truth behind the murder of Lucy Sands.
Mr Harry Mainprize played by Aldwyn Abbott.
Aldwyn plays the charismatic iron works chemist. A good looking young man who knows exactly that! A ladies man and a bit of a catch (he thinks) but the ladies are clued up and know exactly what he's like.
Hes not adverse to the odd bar brawl, a good night out on the town and trying to pull whoever comes within reach, He has the looks after all - so he spends a lot of the time in the Oak, listening to the latest gossip and having his opinions aired..... and of course using his gift of the gab to impress the ladies. A smart dressed young chap who comes across harmless enough, until he has a run in with the accused at the trial where his past is used against him in court..
Master James Sands is played by Luca Trevena.
Luca joined the cast early 2020 to help with some necessary reshoots and pickups.
Jumping into the boots of young James, he quickly made the piece his own and enacted his part perfectly.
He joins the extensively ever growing ranks of our pre teen cast who have been pulled in for featured speaking roles in this period drama series.
So many young actors have been drafted in to give an authentic feel to the life of a Victorian youngster. Who, by the age of just 10 were already deemed to have reached the right age to start working and earning a wage for their upkeep.
And kids today think they have it bad!
Mr Evan Jones is played by Matthew Doman.
Evan Jones - is a witness from the trial who knew and met the prisoner in the Oak soon after the body was found.
Spinning a new twist on the court trial he recants the night he met a very drunken acquaintance who started talking about the body of Lucy and how he knew she had been there from the beginning!
and the scenario that ensued as the acquaintance was bundled out of the Oak to the street.
Matthew from Wales who is no stranger to the screen and TV, his latest roles are to be seen in the ITV screen adaption of Jane Austen's unfinished novel, Sanditon.
Mr Henry James Kerr is played by Tom Patient.
Henry James Kerr is a bit of a town giossip who drinks too much and cannot hold his tongue!
His meeting with a lady on the northside where he tells her what he's heard about Lucy and his subsequent visit to the Forgehammer local pub where his mouth runs out of control gets him into some incredibly hot water - both by the hands of Sarah Stewart and with the local press who witnessed his outlandish claims in the establishment. All judges of the court decide to teach him a lesson hes not going to forget in a hurry.
Mr Billy Wilson, is played by James Stuckey.
Billy Wilson, met with Lucy a few months before her disappearance, a stone mason by trade whose association to Lucy wasn't initaiily to his advantage as Lucy cited him as being the man she was planning on walking out with later that evening 1st December 1881. The night she went missing!
James Stuckey, came along like many of the new cast we drafted in en masse for the court scenes from a localised South West casting call. Like the others his scene was done and dusted within less than an hour, and his short spell in the story is quickly over, but his memory lives on in her story.
Captain Richard Robinson, played by Roy Restell
Roy is an actor who has been in this production as a supporting actor since day one. His character of the retired Captain Robinson was the warden St Johns Church and the churches treasurer (This is the church where Lucy now lies). He was a devout religious man who ensured that the church's finances were kept in order leaving other duties to his trusted friend Mrs Manson.
His actual liaisons with Mrs Martha Manson are unknown, but they did seem to be somewhat inseparable at most times. They appear in the film as a couple of friends - possibly with benefits?
Judge Michael Falcon is portrayed by Jason Collins,
JASON was brought into the fray by word of mouth from our photographer Mike Alsford.
when Jason traveled to deepest Cornwall to visit us where he was completely taken aback by the professionalism and high standards of all the actors and crew he encountered there.
Jason's character was proven in the courtroom scenes in June of 2019. Where the befuddled and slightly inebriated Judge Falcon came into the courts to preside over the trial.
All is not what its seems though!
His intolerance of the witnesses and their stumbling over their words when quizzed by the imposing Mr Paisley leads to many a person being ushered out and their evidence being discounted.
A brutish but intelligent man, who, whilst retaining his professionalism, uses his power and position to his own ends.
Mainly in the private society clubs and gambling houses of the town.
Judge Henry Fletcher played by Simon Alison
Fletcher was one of the judges who sat in (from time to time) on the case of Bird vs Harrison.
He is portrayed here in a more darker role in the judges chambers, flanked by other court officials. Holding the fort whilst judge Michael Falcon is away in Carlisle presiding over another urgent case.
The on screen dynamics between Bird and Fletcher are pretty damned mesmerising.
Simon answered the call for our need for another Judge and brought with him both his skills and an attitude that worked incredibly well on set against his counterpart and adversary Isaac Bird.
Their respective positions in society gave these two men an incredibly commanding and quite intimidating air in the chambers where they battle each other in a war of words.
A sharp and incredibly well educated man, Fletcher keeps an air of grace, passive aggressiveness and composure about him at all times, even when his feathers are ruffled.
Judge Thompson played by Chris Goldhawk,
Judge Thompson sat in on the inquest for most of the time alongside Judge Falcon.
Hes a judgemental man who thinks deeply before he speaks, often to belittle those of lesser intelligence.
His speech is methodical and without much emotion, much like his demeanour, a man who tolerates only his own classes and does not wish to entertain those beneath him.
Chris is another supporting actor who came on board after we met on the set of Sanditon.
We appear to have a lot to thank Jane Austen for in this film.
Chris came along to the Tavistock courts not quite knowing what to expect?
He'd met the director on set where they were both playing roles as supporting actors.
Judge Thompson was played with an air of superiority and entitlement. It worked perfectly!
Mr William Paisley is played by Kelly Merritt.
I met Kelly on set whilst filming for the Jane Austen-esque series Sanditon,
He was one of the mere supporting artists and we gelled the moment we met.
After viewing the trailer Kelly sent me his showreel and upon receipt I immediately sent him Mr Paisley's script,
Paisley is a voracious man, very learned, the best in his trade! Which sends out questions as to how the family - a mere steelworks foreman could afford him?
Mr Paisleys sole intent - as any defence lawyer would be - is to annihilate the opposition and win the case for his clients.
This he does this with a calculated ease and grace, jumping between playing the witnesses friend by sympathising with them, to finally ripping them apart in front of a baying and baited crowd,
Kelly really did sink his teeth firmly into this role and he delivered a performance of such a vile human being with total expertise.
Recently I decided to start working as an SA, alongside obtaining showreel footage from short films to gain invaluable experience to enter the film world. Meeting and getting to know Steve has been a real privilege and I feel honoured to be given such an important and pivotal role in this production, my first feature length.
Acting wise, my experience is predominantly theatrical with notable roles including Stanley in Streetcar Named Desire, The Narrator in War of the Worlds. Gomez in The Addams Family and Ben in Pinter's Dumb Waiter.
Mr Ernest Moore is played by actor Graham Jennings.
Another of our South West actors who auditioned for the part of the courts clerk appearance in the judges chambers..
Graham joined a stellar cast of 7 major actors for the scene in which he appeared as the quiet court observer of the darker than expected facts that were unraveling before his eyes that very morning.
Unperturbed by the revelation of the events he was now privy to. He sat back in his chair, in a nonchalant disengaged manner quaffing his port, whilst allowing the other gentlemen of the room to take control of the situation in hand.
Isaac Bird's heated discussion seemed to fall upon his seemingly deaf ears, whilst he just sits and quietly observes the heated exchange of words between Bird and Fletcher
Sub Inspector Samual Pickard played by Lino Carlino.
Lino a Devon based film director and film company owner was drafted in by our DOP Andy Qualtrough. Lino, a time served actor chose the part of the charismatic Police officer over many of the others that were on offer in those earlier days of casting.
A compassionate, composed, straight down the line and stoic character.
Samuel is a loyal friend and colleague to Isaac Bird who wants nothing more than justice for Lucy. He was first on the scene and the image of Lucy's body is indelibly etched into his mind.
His links with the underground informants makes him a likeable, character among the towns lower classes.
Sitting in on the court sessions he watches over the baying crowds as they turn the proceedings into a circus side show.
Little realising that he is protecting those who seek injustice over real justice for the girl.
Inspector John Armstrong is played by Joe Quick.
What can I say about Joe?
You give him a gentle twist to his role and his elation dial is turned to number eleven.
He stepped up the role when we made him a more important member of the cast than just your average policeman on the scene.
Drafted in to be a part of the Workington police division from Maryport, John is a bit of an outsider but his willingness to help out wherever he can is paramount.
His compassion for the family and the dead girl is evident and his emotions when he encounters the corpse of Lucy are more than convincing,
His closeness to Isaac Bird and his more familiar colleagues is welcomed by the team. He works tirelessly alongside them to try to find the murderer of this poor young woman.
But, with most things out there.
Things are not quite what they seem?
Detective inspector Alexander Taylor is played by Jools Head.
Thrown headlong into the fray of the murder, Jools plays a cool level headed detective who meets with Isaac Bird for the first time. As Isaac arrives on the scene by train from Whitehaven to central street station..
The two of them become close allies in the early days of the investigation, linked together attempting to find Lucy's murderer.
Not an easy task when the body has lain there for so long.
However, his eagle eye and alert senses catch those whom he needs to speak with and he does so without mincing his words,
He's blunt, to the point and very matter of fact in his approach. In the words of Mary Lawson, "hes a man not to be crossed" his assertiveness commands him an audience with whomever he chooses, whether that person likes it or not.
He also shows his less common seen respectful side when first introduced to Nancy and her girls.
Sub Inspector William Dodd played by Peter Grimoldby.
A Workington Bobby (Peelers) who has worked the streets for all his working life.
Played by Peter who came into the fray from nearby Plymouth accompanied by his wife Margaret Grimoldby who plays Lucy's spinster aunt, Esther Reay.,
As a team they have both worked tirelessly and effortlessly on set to bring their own flavour to their chaaracters.
They have faced marauding crowds and some unsettling scenes. Peters on set empathy was transferred into the character of William and this created a very believable character and person of the law.
As William Dodd, I am very pleased to be a part of this project.
Over the past few years I have been a supporting artist, in both film and television, and performed in community theatre.
I have enjoyed working on this project and with its talented cast and crew.
Desk Sergeant Thomas Smith played by Richard Harrison.
Another Workington policeman who has worked his way up to the duties of desk sergeant. Who played his part with the many hundred or so witnesses whom Isaac Bird and his team would come to interview for many weeks before their pre court application.
Yes, you have read the name correct, Harrison. Its not a typo nor a coincidence.
After researching the story of Lucy, Richard and his son Paul got in touch with the director to tell of their family connections with the Harrison family.
Not one to lose the opportunity, communications commenced and information was being bandied about between all partiers.
It turned out that Richard himself was a retired policeman - so with that irony to hand, the logical thing to do was invite Richard and his son Paul to sit in on set for the grilling of their relative Maynard in the police station. They agreed instantaneously! History being made.
Insp Henry Wheelhouse played by Mark Humes.
This film has pulled in actors and supporting actors from all over the country.
Mark answered our call in October 2019 for Cumbrian actors, specifically those hailing from Lucy's hometown - Workington.
But as is common with this film, his answering the call was for his daughter Amy and not himself.
Within less than 2 hours he was kitted out and patrolling the streets of Victorian Workington as inspector Wheelhouse.
Along with other officers in Isaacs posse, he was involved in the search of the Harrison household and the subsequent arrest.
And with Insp Dodd he accompanied Isaac Bird to the funeral of Lucy to help keep order and be there should any arrests be made?
His daughter Amy also joined the congregation of the church and quickly befriended the rest of the films younger cast.
A very wise and sensible move for a young lady of her age.
She next appears in one of our minor violent scenes in the film, showing how dangerous the streets of Victorian England can be for young and old alike.
Insp George Slater played by Paul Colchester Harrison.
Yes you guessed, the son of his policeman counterpart Richard Harrison, Using the heralded family title of Colchester Harrison.
After researching the story of Lucy for many years our director came across a thread on a google forum and saw the name Colchester Harrison on there.
Curiosity piqued, he followed the name up and found a person going by the same name on facebook, so throwing caution to the wind he threw out a message to the person expecting the message to be lost in the 'filtered' system..
A few months later a reply came back and Paul confirmed it was indeed he who had asked the original question about the killer.
He was introduced to Lucys story and by December of that year had been pressganged into appearing in the series.
He plays the policeman who sits and records the killers original statement and the statements of many key witnesses.
A fitting coup for the film with the living relatives of the Harrison family - Priceless!
Mr Richard Harrison is played by Roger Wilson.
Reverend J J Thornley is played by Simon Underdown
Mr John Telford is played by Mr Stu Buchanon.
Mr William Grant is played by Mr Will Vero.
Mr George Morgan is played by George Seymour.
Mr Harry Clarke is played by Angus Beechey.
Reverend John Cooper is played by John Broom.
Mr Edgar Taylor is played by John Campbell.
Mr James Andre is played by Shaun McDonald.
Mr Albert Ward is played by Ronald Pollock.
Mr Jack Baker is played by Nick Odams.
Yan the sailor is played by Scotty Russell.
Mr Oscar Ward is played by, Jon Ian Dredge
Our first on the scene reporter from The West Cumberland Post, a ruthless man who would literally sell his soul for the scoop of the century!
He sold it here for Lucys story, after being tipped off by his gaffer Peter Phillips, who chanced upon the grisly scene on his early morning walk with his dog, but Judge ye not! He is an unintentional and accidental hero in the story of Lucys murder!
Treated worse than a street dog by Isaac Bird, his relentless quest for the story helped make Lucys name a household one all across the entire Victorian Empire.
All will be revealed in the films series eventual release,
Mr Peter Phillips is played by Darrel Wheeler.
Our west Cumberland post newspaper owner and printer by trade is played by Darrel Wheeler, father of young Ruben who plays James Reay.
The story of Lucy made the paper a massive hit of the day, it was ar the forefront of Lucys murder case and the lead up to it, giving weekly reports on the investigations as the news was spread around the town, and around the entire world!
The court case in April launched the papers bi-weekly edition, which lead to the papers expansion and profits, a one penny supplement was released on theWednesday and continued to prosper for almost a century afterwards, until the paper merged with the now more commonly known Times and Star.
Being familiar with the amount of time spent on set chaperoning my son Ruben I thought it would be a bit of fun to put myself forward as an extra for this great production.
One of the parts was ‘man with dog’ which I thought was perfect as we had Denzel our Jack Russell. Much to my surprise when the script came through I had a couple of lines, I’d never acted before but gave it a go. The genie was then out of the bottle and it became obvious who Ruben got his acting gene from!
The part evolved even further when I did an ad lib scene with John Dredge (who plays the much unloved journalist) shot in the print room at Flambards.
Mr George Suart is played by Darren Pardoe
Mr William Grove is played by Taff Rockin Bear.
The unknown witness is played by Mike Walt.
Mr Edward White is played by David Grey.
Mr Harry Fielding is played by Kieron Gooding.
Mr Thomas Rosser is played by TBC.
Mr William Harrington is played by TBC.
Mr Jacques L'Eventreur is played by Mark Starr.
Jacques is an oddball and out of place character, drafted in from the high society circles of Paris and London, he has a job to do and he is known for doing it well!
Played by Traveling West End actor Mark Starr, Jacques was originally scripted for a French born actor who pulled out of the role a week or so before the filming was due to take place,
Mark read the script and within 5 minutes demanded to be given a chance at the role! He stepped in and immediately took the role to a whole new level, adding in his own flavour and charisma,
He's the most odious character we have scripted to date but despite Jacques fierce and nasty reputation, he has an air of tranquility and calm about him and he takes a shine rather quickly to the person he is entrusted to 'deal with'..
Mr Philip Wallace is played by the films stunts coordinator Ryan John.
Philip is known as a protege of Jacques, he yearns to learn the dark craft of the man, and literally worships the ground that he walks upon.
A man trained to blend in the shadows he spends his time observing the goings on within the town and reporting any activity to his superiors.
A trusted servant to the gentry he is drafted into the story to first of all meet with Jacques - an excited young man who has many questions to ask of his hero who has traveled from London to meet with the local JP's of Cumberland. Always watching and waiting in the shadows he's a rather dangerous man.
Later in the film we see him both accompanying Jacques and the accused to their destinations.
Mr Joseph Telfer is played by Robyn Sass.
Joseph is a calculatedly complex and cruel character, devoid of any feelings or thoughts for anybody but Joseph
From the onset of the series Joseph is prevalent, a 'ne'er do well' local miscreant who would take anything thats not bolted down to pay for that nights whiskey, and would fight with anybody who crossed their path whilst taking it.
During their part in the series you'll see Joesph turn up at various intervals to deal with anyone whose mouth is running away with them.
Josephs complex character is contrasted by his meek watchmaker brother from Maryport, who also happens to be an ordained priest, two opposite sides of the coin, one family!