Douglas Anstruther collaborated on two writing projects in 1943 - 1944, during the Second World War. The first was with John Gwynne Brooks, then of "Cedars" in Woodfield Road, Hadleigh in Essex. Together, they wrote a book titled "Mrs. Britain's Guests". The second was with William J. Foster, then of 60, Cowper Road, Harpenden in Hertfordshire. This work was a play with the title "Something In The City".

Both works were assigned via the Agents, Messrs. A.P.Watt & Son at Hastings House, Norfolk Street (No. 10) Strand, London W.C. 2. Each was the subject of a contractual royalty sharing agreement between the respective authors, by division of which, it is made clear as to which partner in the two collaborations contributed more significantly to the idea and/or to the form of the work.

For Mrs. Britain's Guests (A.P.Watt 425.10 dated 27 April 1944) the division (after expenses, commissions and fees) was to be 66% to 33% in favour of Douglas Anstruther. For the play, Something In The City (A.P.Watt 425.18 dated 2 June 1944) the division (after expenses, commissions and fees) was to be 75% to 25% in favour of William J. Foster.

A programme of interest ...

Douglas Anstruther - 1914 Play  - Royal Court TheatreLa plume de ...
Douglas Anstruther - writer ...
Parker Duofold Pen engraved with signature of Douglas Anstruther.
Click on pen to see details of his earliest work. "The Farewell Performance" 8th May 1914
"The Farewell Performance".
A play by Yvonne FitzRoy and Douglas Anstruther.
Adapted from
"The Sense of Climax"
by Perceval Gibbon.

This play was produced at The Royal Court Theatre in 1914 and was staged for two performances (3pm and 8.30pm on Friday 8th May) in aid of The FitzRoy Club for Working Lads.

Something In The City

This was the title of a series
screened in Britain by ITV in 1959.
(Jack Hylton Productions)
It ran for one series only
6th July to 3rd August 1959.

Mondays 8.30pm

Episode 1 (06/7/59)
Episode 2 (13/7/59)
Episode 3 (20/7/59)
Episode 4 (27/7/59)
Episode 5 (03/8/59)
Directed by Kenneth Carter
Characters played as follows:
George Keys - by - Eric Baker
Betty Keyes - by - Joan Benham
Freddie Chidock - by - Derek Guyler
Phyl Chiddock - by - Pearl Hackney
Joe Miller - by - Peter Hammond
Maisie Miller - by - Diane Hart
The programme has been summarised as follows: "George Keyes travels to work every morning by train and returns the same way each evening. Among his fellow commuters are Freddie Chiddock and Joe Miller." and as "Exploits of three businessmen in the city who travel to work together on the same train."

There are and were no Writer credits attaching to this programme and it is listed as "A British adaptation of "The Commuters" which formed part of Sid Caesar's US series "Caesar's Hour" which was screened between 1954 and 1957. This latter has been described as "an excrutiatingly funny sketch (called "The Commuters,") all about a family fight that breaks up a New Year's Eve celebration."


Douglas Anstruther was born in 1893. He died in 1956.

Douglas Anstruther - about

Grateful thanks are extended to the holders of above Anstruther information in the A.P.Watt Collection
The Manuscripts Department - CB# 3926, Wilson Library - The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - Chapel Hill, North Carolina U.S.A. - Ms Donna Baker

A. P. Watt and Company, Limited, was the world's first literary agency and was, for its first thirty years of existence, the largest as well. Alexander Pollock Watt (1834-1914) began working as a literary agent in 1875 when a friend called upon him to negotiate a contract with a London publishing company.

By 1881, A. P. Watt had incorporated his business and begun to define the role of the literary agent. Watt's son, A. S. Watt, took over the literary agency after the elder Watt's death in 1914. A. S. Watt continued to attract important authors to the agency, among them Pearl Buck, G. K. Chesterton, Robert Graves, W. Somerset Maugham, Rafael Sabatini, Nevil Shute, Mark Twain, P. G. Wodehouse, William Butler Yeats, and Herbert George Wells, for whom A. S. Watt was not only personal literary agent, but close friend as well.

5th October 1942 - Watt family (W. P. Watt) signature from the Anstruther Guest Book.. Visited a second time 25th November 1943.

Current Listing under Association of Authors' Agents -
A. P. Watt Ltd. 20 John Street, London WC1N 2DR - Tel: 020 7405 6774 - Fax: 020 7831 2154

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