Al Murray, Mel Giedroyc, Carrie Hope Fletcher, Neil Morrissey & Joe Thomas Announced To Star In THE CROWN JEWELS | The Fan Carpet Ltd • The Fan Carpet: The RED Carpet for FANS • The Fan Carpet: Fansites Network • The Fan Carpet: Slate • The Fan Carpet: Theatre Spotlight • The Fan Carpet: Arena • The Fan Carpet: International

Al Murray, Mel Giedroyc, Carrie Hope Fletcher, Neil Morrissey & Joe Thomas Announced To Star In THE CROWN JEWELS

31 March 2023



Garrick Theatre

Friday 7 July – Saturday 16 September 2023

Press Night: Wednesday 19 July 2023 

Simon Friend Entertainment is delighted to today announce a 24-carat cast for this summer’s must-see West End comic caper, The Crown Jewels which plays at the Garrick Theatre from Friday 7  July – Saturday 16 September 2023 ahead of regional autumn engagements.

Based on the true story of one of British history’s most audacious heist attempts, a super-star cast is confirmed to appear in this raucous royal affair including; Al Murray (The Pub Landlord) as Charles II;  Mel Giedroyc (BBC 1’s The Great British Bake Off, Channel 4’s Light Lunch)Carrie Hope Fletcher (Bad Cinderella, Les Misérables, Heathers in the West End); Aidan McArdle (Leopoldstadt, West End, Ridley, ITV)Neil Morrissey (BBC 1’s Men Behaving Badly, Line of Duty)Joe Thomas (Channel 4’s The InbetweenersFresh Meat, BBC 2’s White Gold) and Tanvi Virmani (Life of PiWest End).

Written by BAFTA-nominated creator of ITV’s The Durrells and BBC 1’s Men Behaving Badly, Simon Nye, and directed by multi-Olivier Award winner Sean Foley (Upstart Crow, The Ladykillers) it would be criminal to miss it.

Following its West End premiere The Crown Jewels then tours to The Lowry, Salford (Tuesday 19 – Saturday 23 September), Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury* (Monday 25 – Saturday 30 September) and the New TheatreCardiff* (Monday 2 – Saturday 7 October 2023).

*Additional casting to be announced.

The Crown Jewels is a riotous new comedy based on the most unbelievable royal caper in British history. Charismatic and unpredictable Colonel Blood is planning the greatest heist of all time: stealing the Crown Jewels in plain sight. With a gang of misfits by his side, what could possibly go wrong? But Charles II can’t afford a royal scandal, and no King likes people handling their Crown Jewels…

Writer Simon Nye says: “I hope audiences will be as titillated and thrilled as I am at the prospect of a riotous comedy-drama about a crown jewels heist that really happened. True crime comes to the West End, 350 years after the event. The cast is an amazing array of comedy talent, and the subject matter absurdly topical. Satire, sword-fighting, love, violence, an examination of the monarchy and Anglo-Irish relations - could you ask for anything more?"

Director Sean Foley continues “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to direct Simon Nye’s hilarious new play. An entirely modern take on the Restoration Comedy, it transports us to a completely different time - a time when England had a new king…whose name was Charles. I’m excited to be working with our brilliant cast, and we all hope to thoroughly entertain audiences in one of my favourite theatres - the Garrick - over this Coronation summer.”

Producer Simon Friend adds “The Crown Jewels came out of a mad idea that Simon Nye and I cooked up during lockdown, fantasising about shows we could make if theatres were to ever reopen. We’re incredibly lucky that such a talented cast, with Sean as director, have gathered around for this hilarious play about a famous heist that went awry, and we look forward to bringing some laughter to the West End this summer.”



The creative team is Director, Sean Foley; Writer, Simon Nye; Set and Costume Designer, Michael Taylor Lighting Designer, Natasha Chivers and Andy Graham, Sound Designer.

The Crown Jewels is produced by Simon Friend in association with Adam Kenwright, Trafalgar Theatre Productions, Jenny King, Gavin Kalin, David Adkin and JAS Productions.

For more information visit THE CROWN JEWELS online and follow Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @CrownJewelsPlay




Press Night: Wednesday 19 July


Garrick Theatre

2 Charing Cross Road

Charing Cross



Performance Dates

Friday 7 July – Saturday 16 September 2023

Access Performances

Captioned Performances - Tuesday 8 August at 7.30pm

BSL performance – Tuesday 8 August at 7.30pm

Tickets available at the Nimax Theatre.

Box Office: 0330 333 4811


The Lowry, Salford

Tuesday 19 – Saturday 23 September 2023

On sale Friday 31 March

Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury*

Monday 25 – Saturday 30 September 2023  

On sale Friday 31 March

New Theatre, Cardiff*

Monday 2 – Saturday 7 October 2023 

On sale Friday 31 March


Al Murray

Al Murray with his alter-ego, The Pub Landlord, is one of the most recognisable and successful comedians in the UK.

For over 20 years Al has filled arenas and the largest theatres around the world as The Pub Landlord, and won numerous awards and accolades, including the Edinburgh Comedy Award (formally Perrier Award, after a record four successive nominations) and secured Olivier Award nominations for both of his sell-out West End runs.  He has hosted countless TV series, including the acclaimed entertainment chat show Al Murray’s Happy Hour (ITV) and the ground-breaking sitcom Time Gentlemen Please (Sky).  Al has made multiple appearances on The Royal Variety Performance (ITV) and hosted Live at the Apollo (BBC) and Live at the Palladium (ITV).

Swapping his comedy stage persona for himself, Al authored and presented the Broadcast Award-winning five-part series Al Murray: Why Does Everyone Hate the English? and Al Murray: Why Do The Brits Win Every War? (both Sky).  Combining his passion for film and history he filmed two specials for BBC Four: Al Murray’s Great British War Movies and Al Murray’s Great British Spy Movies.  Al also co-hosts the hugely popular WW2 history podcast, We Have Ways of Making You Talk with fellow bestselling military author James Holland.

As a writer, Al has also enjoyed great success with his books including Book of British Common SenseThink Yourself BritishGreat British Pub Quiz BookWatching War Films with My Dad and, most recently, Command, an entertaining and sharp analysis of the key allied military leaders in WW2, which was released this autumn.   He has co-written Idiots Assemble: Spitting Image The Musical (with Matt Forde and Sean Foley) which opens in the West End this May.




Mel Giedroyc is a TV presenter, writer and actress.  She is known for her work alongside Sue Perkins. Shows such as the multi-Bafta-winning Great British Bake Off (BBC) and Light Lunch (Channel 4) which made them household names. Mel has appeared in sitcoms and panel shows, as well as on stage, most recently in Stephen Sondheim’s Olivier Award-winning Company at the Gielgud Theatre in the West End. Mel and Sue were reunited in the comedy series Hitmen for Sky. Mel has been a regular presenter for BBC’s Children in need and Eurovision. Mel can currently be seen hosting a comedy panel show Unforgivable for Dave currently in its third series and Series 2 of Handmade: Britain’s Best Woodworker for Channel 4. Mel’s first novel The Best Things was released last year.



Carrie Hope Fletcher is an actress, author, and vlogger.

Theatre includes: Carabosse in Sleeping Beauty (The Marlowe Theatre), Grusha in The Caucasian Chalk Circle (Rose Theatre), Cinderella in Cinderella (Gillian Lynne Theatre), Fantine in Les Misérables: The Concert (Gielgud Theatre), Veronica in Heathers (Theatre Royal Haymarket), Brenda in The Christmasaurus Live (Eventim Apollo, Hammersmith), Wednesday in The Addams Family (Music and Lyrics), Eponine in Les Misérables (Dubai – Cameron Mackintosh), Truly Scrumptious in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Music and Lyrics), Eponine in Les Misérables (Queen’s), Beth in Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds (arena tour), Wind in the Willows (Regent’s Park Open Air), Jane Banks in Mary Poppins (Disney Theatrical/Cameron Mackintosh), Jemima in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Young Eponine in Les Misérables.

Television includes: In Two Minds, Break Kids, Princess Beatrix in Wilhelmina and Dog & Duck. 

Concerts:  Treason - The Musical in Concert (Theatre Royal Drury Lane), When the Curtain Falls (Cadogan Hall), Jason Robert Brown in Concert (Haymarket Theatre), West End Does Love (FortyFour Productions), West End Does Christmas (FortyFour Productions), West End Does Animation (FortyFour Productions), Edges (Prince of Wales), Andrew Lippa in Concert, Sheytoons in Concert (St James) and Ramin Karimloo’s 2012 tour Road to Find Out. Carrie is going out on her first solo tour in 2023 entitled An Open Book – she will be touring around the UK and the show will be a celebration of Carrie’s career so far.

Music: Carrie’s debut solo album When the Curtain Falls, released in March 2018 and produced by 2300 RECORDS, went straight into the Top 20 UK Album Charts and number two in the iTunes Soundtrack Charts. She is currently listed as a 2022 GRAMMY nominee for two competing albums for Best Musical Theatre Album - Cinderella (Original Concept Album) and Les Misérables: The Staged Concert (Live Album).

Presenting: Backstage Host of the 2018 Olivier Awards at the Royal Albert Hall and Host of the 2016 Olivier Awards in the Piazza.

Books:  Carrie’s first book All I Know Now: Wonderings and Reflections on Growing Up Gracefully, released in 2015; On the Other Side, released in July 2016; All That She Can See, released in 2017; When The Curtain Falls, released in July 2018; In The Time We Lost was released in 2019 and her most recent novel, Into The Spotlight, a reimagining of Noel Streafeild’s Ballet Shoes was her first children’s book, released September 2020. Her sixth novel, With This Kiss, is due to be published in April 2022.

Awards: Carrie is a three-time winner of Best Actress in a Musical at the WhatsOnStage Awards for the roles of Cinderella in Cinderella, Veronica Sawyer in Heathers and Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family. She has also won the WhatsOnStage Award for Best Takeover in a Role for Eponine in Les Misérables.

Social Media: Alongside her acting, literary and music career, Carrie is an established online presence with over 491,000 followers on Twitter, 589,000 on Instagram and over 700,000 subscribers to her YouTube channel with over 1 million views every month. She was named in the Sunday Times Influencer List as one of the top 100 influencers in the United Kingdom.




Aidan McArdle has most recently shot series Dark Shore for RTÉ opposite Lisa Dwan and Andrew Bennett.

Television credits include; Upcoming television series Untouchable for HBO, Ridley alongside Adrian Dunbar for ITV, Professor T  for Eagle Eye / ITV, Miss Scarlett and The Duke for Element 8 and Work In Progress, Tell Me Everything for ITV, The Holiday for Channel 5, Redback for Viaplay & Nordic Studios, Netflix's The Irregulars, The Trial of Christine Keeler by Bafta award-winning Amanda Coe for the BBC, Miss Scarlett and The Duke, Strike Back, The Fall, Sense 8, Delicious, Jane Eyre, Mr Selfridge, The Maigret Series and Miss Marple. 

Film credits include; Independent Irish feature Hair Raisers written and directed by Rachel Carey, Professor and the Madman, Black 47, Ella Enchanted, Not Only But Always, The Duchess and Borderlands.

Theatre credits include: Tom Stoppard's Olivier-Award Winning play Leopoldstadt at Wyndham's Theatre, West End, Our New Girl at the Gate Theatre, Dublin; This Beautiful Village at the Abbey Theatre and Olivier-nominated Dry Powder at Hampstead Theatre alongside Hayley Atwell and Tom Riley.


Neil Morrissey is one of the country's most popular television actors, well-known for numerous TV programmes such as the BBC sitcom Men Behaving Badly and the critically acclaimed Line Of Duty. He also took on the role of Harry Palfrey in the award-winning The Night Manager, for BBC One.

Neil also plays Greg in ITV’s Good Karma Hospital. Other TV credits include The Long Call, The Syndicate, Penance, The Trial of Christine Keeler, Unforgotten, Striking Out, Grantchester, Me & Mrs Jones, Waterloo Road, Carrie and Barry, Murder in Mind and Paradise Heights. 

Neil has also trodden the boards in the West End, with the stage version of Victoria Wood’s Acorn Antiques. He’s also played Nathan in Guys and Dolls, Fagin in Cameron Mackintosh’s Oliver, and was in Relative Values alongside Men Behaving Badly co-star Caroline Quentin and Neville’s Island with Adrian Edmondson, Miles Jupp and Robert Webb. 

Neil is nothing, if not eclectic. His very first job was filming Mutiny on the Bounty in Tahiti, with Mel Gibson. He has also travelled to Jordan on a camel, followed by a TV crew, and lived to tell the tale. He is also very proud to have had several Number One records! 




Joe Thomas is an Actor, Comedian and Writer best known as Simon in the multi-award winning E4 show The Inbetweeners. Following the success of The Inbetweeners (and the two eponymous films that followed) Joe starred as Kingsley in all four series of Fresh Meat, and as George in Chickens, which he also co-wrote. Joe starred as Nick in the 2018 feature film The Festival and as Martin Lavender in the BBC2/Netflix sitcom White Gold. He recently starred as Greggs in We Are Not Alone (UKTV pilot) alongside Mike Wozniak and Vicki Pepperdine and Matt in ITV Drama Maternal. In theatre, he played the leading role of Vincent in the 2019/2020 UK tour of What’s in a Name. Joe has script development deals with Channel 4 and Fudge Park/BBC and has appeared as himself on Dave’s Taskmaster, and most recently Celebrity Bake-off.


Tanvi Virmani graduated in summer 2022 from BOVTS. She made her professional stage debut playing Miranda in the acclaimed production of The Tempest at Bath Theatre Royal. Tanvi then made her West End debut in Life Of Pi playing Rani. She most recently played Bettina in Sonali Bhattacharyya’s upbeat coming-of-age play Two Billion Beats at The Orange Tree Theatre.





Sean Foley is an actor, writer and director. A double Olivier Award-winner and Tony-nominee, his work as lead creative on 14 West End shows - as co-writer/star; writer/director; adaptor/director; and director - has been Olivier nominated multiple times. He has - uniquely - been personally nominated in the in the acting, writing and directing categories. 

Theatre credits include: Spitting Image The Musical, (Pheonix Theatre, co-writer/director); the Olivier nominated The Upstart Crow, (Gielgud/Apollo, director), starring David Mitchell and Gemma Whelan; The Play What I Wrote(co-writer/director), first major revival guest starring Tom Hiddleston, Adrian Lester, et al;  his Olivier Award-winning production of Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense, (Duke of Yorks), starring Stephen Mangan and Matthew MacFadyen; Olivier Award-nominated The Miser, (co-writer and director, Garrick Theatre), starring Griff Rhys Jones; The Painkiller, in Kenneth Branagh’s West End season, (as adaptor/director, Garrick Theatre), starring Kenneth Branagh and Rob Brydon; the 5 times Olivier nominated The Ladykillers (Gielgud, director/script associate), including Best Director, Best New Play and Whatsonstage Award for Best New Comedy, starring Peter Capaldi; the Olivier nominated, Arturo Brachetti: Change, (writer/director, Garrick); the Olivier Award-winning Do You Come Here Often? (co-writer and actor, Vaudeville); the Olivier Award-winning The Play What I Wrote, (co-writer and actor - further jointly nominated as Best Actor, Wyndham’s). The play was also Tony Award-nominated on its Broadway transfer); the Olivier Award nominated, Ducktastic, (co-writer and actor, Albery). The Walworth Farce, with Brendan, Domhnall and Briain Gleeson, Olympia Theatre, Dublin.

Further directing work includes: The Man In The White Suit, (as writer/director, Wyndhams), starring Stephen Mangan; The Dresser, (Duke of York’s); his RSC debut, adapting and directing Thomas Middleton’s A Mad World My Masters(Swan Theatre, Stratford, and Barbican); Harry Hill and Steve Brown’s, I Cant Sing! at The London Palladium, starring Cynthia Erivo; Present LaughterThe Critic, and The Real Inspector Hound, (Chichester Festival Theatre); Joe Orton’s What The Butler Saw, (Vaudeville); Ben Hur, (Watermill); Pinters People, (Theatre Royal, Haymarket); as writer only, his adaptation of Eugene Ionesco’s Amedee, or How To Get Rid Of It, debuted at Birmingham Rep.

Sean has also directed the live shows of leading comedians, including: Joan Rivers: A Work In Progress, (Leicester Square); Armstrong and Miller Live (UK Tour); Catherine Tate Live (UK and Australian Tour)

As co-artistic director of the right size, he created, co-wrote and starred in ten original stage comedies 1990 to 2000. The company played in over 25 countries around the world, winning many international awards. 

As an actor: Hamlet, directed by Kenneth Branagh (RADA); Mister Puntila and his Man Matti, (Traverse, Almeida, Albery); I Am Shakespeare, (Chichester); Hysteria, (Birmingham Rep); Wild West, (2 series, BBC1); Brass Eye, People Like Us, (C4); The Fitz, (BBC 2); The Harry Hill FilmAll Is True; and as the lead in the C4/RTE produced Samuel Beckett short, Act Without Words 1.

His feature film directing debut, Mindhorn, written by and starring Julian Barratt & Simon Farnaby, was first seen at the London Film Festival and won the London Film Comedy Award for Best First Feature. TV directing includes episodes of Sky’s anthology series, Urban Myths: Marilyn and Billy, starring Gemma Arterton; and Diana and Freddy.

Sean is the Artistic Director of Birmingham Repertory Theatre. 

SIMON NYE - Writer

SIMON NYE’s writing career encompasses translations, novels, television sitcoms and drama, adaptations, animation and film. He translated books before turning to fiction, adapting his two novels Men Behaving Badly and Wideboy for the small screen. He had a series on all four main terrestrial TV channels in one year, plus the US Men Behaving Badly on NBC. He has won a TV Bafta for Just William.

Television series include: The Larkins, Finding Alice (co-written with Roger Goldby)all episodes of Bafta-nominated The Durrells (starring Keeley Hawes), Warren UnitedJust Williaman episode of Doctor WhoCarrie & Barry (with Neil Morrissey), Hardware (Bafta-nominated, starring Martin Freeman), Wild WestThe Savages, Beast, How Do You Want Me, My Wonderful Life, Is It Legal?, Frank Stubbs Promotes (starring Timothy Spall) and multi award-winning Men Behaving Badly.

TV movies include: Tommy Cooper: Not Like That, Like This (starring David Threlfall and Helen McCrory), two Urban Myths for Sky Arts, Catwalk Dogs, Gerald Durrell’s My Family & Other Animals (with Imelda Staunton), Open Wide, Tunnel Of Love, Beauty (with Martin Clunes), Pride, PollyannaThe Railway Children, True Love, and four TV Pantomimes.

Movie credits include work on Flushed Away and Down Dog.

He has translated the plays Don Juan (Sheffield Crucible) starring Tom Hollander, and Accidental Death Of An Anarchist (Donmar Warehouse) with Rhys Ifans.

Simon spent several happy years working in theatre box offices, and now co-runs TV production company Genial Productions.

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