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Confessions Of Honour

    by Gerry Hinks


Drama Play Script: 'Confessions Of Honour' by Gerry Hinks

It is August 28th 1994, the fiftieth anniversary of the battle of Epernay where Frederick Salisbury committed and act of bravery and which won him the Victoria Cross. He is in the Sergeants Mess at Whittington Barracks, Lichfield, as the guest of honour.

Today, he is to present his award to the regiment in which he served – The Staffordshire Regiment – but surprisingly, he shows no sign of the bravery he displayed all those years ago.

Today, he must stand on the saluting base of the parade ground while the regiment, complete with colours and mascot, march past him.

Today, he must be the centre of attention at the dinner held in his honour, and make a speech – more daunting than facing the enemy at Epernay. 

Into this scene comes an unexpected visitor in the form of an old enemy – a German soldier, Wolfgang Meissler. After preliminaries, Wolfgang asks if he could be allowed to spend a little time alone with Frederick. Like two gladiators they probe each other into a verbal battle, neither prepared to make the first move. Eventually, Frederick realises that Wolfgang already knows quite a lot about him. How? Why? 

Soon, it becomes clear to Frederick that Wolfgang is a journalist who has arrived to interview him. The tension is eased and the two men talk, but there is still a mystery when Wolfgang begins to explain his story. What has his story got to do with Frederick? 

As their stories unfold it is clear that the old antagonism between them in wartime must now be put firmly in the past, and only a closely bonded friendship is will exist between them – united in the one thing that brought them together in the first place. The Victoria Cross.

Characters (2m, 1f)

  Sergeant Major Karen Baker : early 40s, married with two sons.
  Frederick Salisbury VC : 69, widower, now lives alone, has one son.
  Wolfgang Meissler : 68, ex-Wehrmacht soldier, married with two daughters.

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