On the evening of Tuesday 21st November, Birkenhead School had the honour of hosting a Linghams Booksellers’ event and welcomed Sir Tony Robinson to speak in Bushell Hall about his new autobiography, ‘No Cunning Plan’.
An acclaimed author of over 20 children’s books and a well-loved actor and presenter, Sir Tony regaled the 200-strong audience with stories from his youth, talking about early family life and theatre productions that he had been a part of and then on to behind-the-scenes tales of Blackadder and Time Team.
With a career spanning over 50 years, and with job titles such as, producer, actor, presenter, author, political activist, comedian and, of course, Knight of the realm, Sir Tony did an excellent job of giving his attentive audience a glimpse into his fascinating life so far.
As well as delighting the audience with captivating accounts of his successful career, Sir Tony also treated those in attendance to a reading of his autobiography and it was clear from the audience reaction that everyone would be leaving that night very happy with their purchase.
In conjunction with the stories of fame and fortune, Sir Tony also recounted more personal stories, one of which being from when his daughter was growing up. He told of how watching her fight to be the striker in her football team, even though she had no ball skills whatsoever, and then turning to berate teammates whenever she missed a shot, led to him using her as his inspiration for the Maid Marian TV series, which looks at what would have happened if Maid Marian had been in charge of the Merry Men, rather than Robin Hood.
This story, along with Sir Tony’s answer to the audience question ‘if you could go back, what advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?’ – “It doesn’t matter if you don’t win, it does matter if you don’t try”, made for a very encouraging and inspirational evening.
This isn’t the first time that Sir Tony has graced the Bushell Hall stage, as he visited back in June to speak to pupils at Birkenhead School about his new children’s book series, ‘Weird World of Wonders’. In fact, the Wirral has become, as mentioned in Tuesday evening’s performance, a second home to Sir Tony, with family links to the area.
At the end of such a successful performance, with the flawless lighting and sound being operated by Birkenhead School students, Sir Tony exited stage left, ready to sign his autobiography for the long line of adoring fans, all excitedly discussing their favourite part of the show.
Following such a wonderful evening at the School, Headmaster, Paul Vicars had this to say about the event, "We’re delighted to be working with Linghams Booksellers to bring another event, and personality of considerable stature, to the Wirral. Whilst Sir Tony may have ‘No Cunning Plan’, the School’s strategic plan celebrates our independence as a school, driving forward our academic and co-curricular programmes to inspire both our pupils and the local community."
For more photos from the evening, please visit the Birkenhead School Facebook photo gallery.