Chief of mischief Mark Thomas has 50 Things About Us he wants to say on tour

Satire this way: mischief-maker Mark Thomas has 50 Things About Us he wants to get off his chest. Pictures: Steve Ullathorne

MISCHIEF-MAKING activist comedian, satirical writer, political agent provocateur, TV and radio presenter, journalist and podcaster Mark Thomas sets out on his 50 Things About Us: Work In Progress tour on January 23.

Among the 54 dates are The Crescent, York, on March 4 and Leeds City Varieties Music Hall on April 9 as the South Londoner combines his trademark mix of “storytelling, stand-up, mischief and really, really well researched material to examine how we have come to inhabit this divided wasteland that some of us call the United Kingdom”.

Thomas, 56, will be picking through the myths, facts and figures of our national identities to ask how we have so much feeling for such a hollow land. “Who do we think we are?” he ponders.

Mark Thomas: keeping an eye on the state of the nation

50 Things About Us is billed as “a show about money, history, songs, gongs, wigs, unicorns, guns, bungs, sods of soil and rich people, in the vein of The Manifesto-meets-sweary history channel”.

Thomas has made his mark down the years by stopping arms deals; creating a manifesto and bringing the winning policy to parliament; walking the entire length of the Israeli wall in the West Bank and setting up a comedy club in the Palestinian city of Jenin.

He has hosted six series on Channel 4, alongside several television documentaries and radio series; written books; grabbed a Guinness World Record; sold out numerous tours; won awards aplenty; nabbed himself a Medal of Honour and succeeded in changing some laws along the way. 

His Work In Progress tour also takes in further Yorkshire gigs at Hebden Bridge Trades Club, February 16; Sheffield Memorial Hall, March 1, and Wakefield Theatre Royal, March 5. Box office: York, 01904 622510 or at; Leeds, 0845 644 1881 or; Hebden Bridge, 01422 845265 or; Sheffield, 0114 278 9789 or; Wakefield, 01924 211311.