Theatre Royal Haymarket

1905 – Horace Watson

Horace Watson : Gielgud and the Blitz

Harrison was succeeded by Horace Watson and he by his son Stuart. Many great names played over these years, including Ralph Richardson, Charles Lawton, Henry Ainley, Flora Robson, Noel Coward, Vivian Leigh, Dame Edith Evans and Donald Wolfoot, until, during the Second World War, John Gielgud headed a distinguished Resident Company, which included Peggy Ashcroft.

Gielgud stayed in the theatre for weeks on end during the Blitz, taking up residence in Dressing Room No.10 and acting as Fire Warden, watching from the roof. Gielgud often referred to No.10 as his favourite room in any theatre, even ‘his favourite room anywhere’ and the famous Cecil Beaton portraits of Gielgud were taken here.

Did you know? The Theatre Royal Haymarket Archive documents the fascinating history of the theatre. To find out more, click here


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