John Godber to be Awarded OBE in 2018 New Year Honours List

Celebrated Wakefield playwright John Godber has been selected to receive an OBE in the 2018 New Year Honours. Theatre Royal Wakefield’s Creative Director and head of The John Godber Company will be awarded the OBE in recognition of his extensive services to the arts.

John was born the son of a miner in Upton, West Yorkshire. He trained as a teacher of drama at Bretton Hall College, Wakefield. Whilst he was Head of Drama at Minsthorpe High School, the school he attended as a student, he won every major award at the National Student Drama Festival between 1981 and 1983.

John’s plays are performed across the world, and he has the distinction of being one of the most performed writers in the English language. He has won numerous awards for his plays, including a Laurence Olivier Award, seven Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards, six Edinburgh Fringe Firsts, eight Joseph Jefferson Awards, Chicago, the Yorkshire Arts Personality of the Year Award, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Yorkshire Society. His plays include: Bouncers, Up ’n’ Under, April in Paris, Teechers, Perfect Pitch and Shafted! John will be joining the likes of English actor Sarah Lancashire, and comedian and actor David Walliams, both of whom were awarded the OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2017.

John Godber said:

“I’m delighted and honoured to receive this award and humbled to be recognised for something I’ve enjoyed doing for forty odd years!”

Chair of Theatre Royal Wakefield’s board of directors Gill Galdins said:

“We are so proud and pleased for John to have been recognised in this way. It is well deserved for someone who has been so prolific in his writing and directing for many years. His work is enjoyed by many, not just in the Wakefield District or the UK but all over the world.”

John’s latest play The Scary Bikers opens at Theatre Royal Wakefield on Thursday 8 February and runs until Saturday 17 February before embarking on an extensive UK Tour. The play explores a blossoming romance on a tandem bike ride through post-Brexit Europe.

Tickets are available from the Box Office on 01924 211 311 or via

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