Author: Arnold Hinchliffe
Arnold Hinchliffe was born in 1922 in Huddersfield, Yorkshire. He was
educated at Huddersfield College and Manchester University where he took
his M.A. in English Language and Literature. He served four years in the
RAF (in Egypt, India, Burma and Malaya), then travelled around in Europe
before settling down to a teaching and writing career in London. He married
a fellow ex-Manchester student, Margaret Whettam, in 1952 and they had
two sons, Owen and Jonathan.
Arnold Hinchliffe was a prolific writer for radio, television and stage;
he also collaborated on some BBC historical programmes and, on leaving
teaching, worked for some years for the BBC as a script reader. He was
a prizewinner in an Observer television play competition and a number of
his plays, notably Strike! and The Life of
Klaggs, were performed by Unity
Theatre (the Left’s most sustained and successful contribution to
British drama). A musical version of The Pickwick
Papers ran successfully
at the Tower Theatre, Islington.
Arnold was a first-rate linguist who spoke German, French and Russian
fluently — he taught himself Russian — and he published numerous
translations, notably Brecht’s The Visions of
Simone Machard and
two volumes of Chekhov’s short stories, many of them previously untranslated.
He was awarded 1st prize by “Soviet Literature” for a translation
Added to this Arnold Hinchliffe was a keen pianist (for his own enjoyment)
and he wrote a number of independent songs as well as operatic numbers
for some of his plays. I used to hear him thumping out Mackie
numbers from Gershwin through the partition wall and once I was so struck
by a haunting tune that I asked him who composed it and he said, “I
His last work was a historical play The Traitor which, like The
Brotherhood of Thieves, was first published by Koré Publishing (now absorbed
by Brimstone Press).
Arnold Hinchliffe was a remarkably modest and unassuming man who was universally
liked and respected — an extremely rare occurrence for a writer.
He belonged to the Unitarian Church.
For more details of his activities and philosophic views see the website:
Publications by Arnold