More Things To Do in and around York with fishermen, Irishmen and a Scotsman. List No. 48, courtesy of The Press, York

Getting Away With Murder(s) documentary filmmaker David Wilkinson at the gate of Auschwitz 1

AS the Grand Opera House reopens, diaries are starting to fill to pre-pandemic levels, much to the delight of a post self-isolating Charles Hutchinson.

Film world premiere of the week: Getting Away With Murder(s); Everyman York, Blossom Street, York, tonight, 6.30pm to 10.30pm

IT has taken 18 years for Yorkshire filmmaker David Wilkinson to bring his documentary, Getting Away With Murder(s), to the big screen.

Exploring an overlooked aspect of the Holocaust, he reveals that “almost one million people in 22 countries willingly carried out the unprovoked murder of 11 million innocent men, women and children but 99 per cent of those responsible were never prosecuted”.

Wilkinson, who examines the reasons behind the disregard for justice, will take part in a post-screening Q&A. Box office:

Fisherman’s Friends: Hooked on sea songs at York Barbican

They inspired a film and now they are back: Fisherman’s Friends: Unlocked & Unleashed, York Barbican, tomorrow, 7pm

CORNISH “buoy band” Fisherman’s Friends – combined aged 401 – re-emerge from lockdown for their Unlocked & Unleashed tour.

As celebrated in the film that shares their name, for 40 years they have met on the Platt of Port Isaac’s harbour to sing the songs of the sea.

In the line-up are lobster fisherman Jeremy Brown; writer, shopkeeper and master of ceremonies Jon Cleave; smallholder and engineer John ‘Lefty’ Lethbridge; Yorkshire-born builder John McDonnell; Padstow fisherman Jason Nicholas; filmmaker Toby Lobb and the new boy, former ambulance driver Pete Hicks. Box office:

One Night In Dublin: One night in York for Irish songs aplenty at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre

Irish gig/jig of the week: One Night In Dublin, Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, Saturday, 7.30pm

SATURDAY night is the chance to spend One Night In Dublin – in York – when “Murphy’s Irish Pub” opens its doors at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre.

Join in the craic as the lively Irish tribute band covers such Irish staples as Galway Girl, Tell Me Ma, Dirty Old Town, Irish Rover, Seven Drunken Nights and Whiskey In The Jar. Box office:

Gary Meikle: Scottish comedian in Surreal mode at York Barbican

This experience really is “Surreal”: Gary Meikle: Surreal, York Barbican, Sunday, 8pm

DELAYED from April 8 to this weekend, playfully dark cheeky-chappie Scottish comedian and “viral sensation” Gary Meikel presents his second tour show in York.

Looking to “get away with talking about anything that will have you laughing at things you probably shouldn’t be”, punchy storyteller Meikle draws material from his own experiences, not least his unique family dynamic.

New show Surreal covers such topics as evolution, social media, how to deal with burglars, single mums, bee sex and small-man syndrome. Box office:

Exploration of family, myth and memory loss: Second Body’s Max Barton and Jethro Cooke in Styx at Theatre At The Mill

Residency of the week: Second Body in Styx, Theatre At The Mill, Stillington, near York, Sunday and Tuesday, 8pm

SECOND Body duo Max Barton and Jethro Cooke present their theatre-concert exploration of family, myth, memory loss and Max’s grandma, now with remixed music and bearing wounds wrought by 18 months of disrupted human connectivity.

“What does it mean to lose the memories that make us who we are?” they ask. “How can we continue to be ourselves when we are separated from our loved ones.” Box office:

Back in Black: Robert Goodale and Antony Eden in the ghost story The Woman In Black, haunting the Grand Opera House, York, from Monday. Picture: Tristram Kenton

Re-opening of the week: Grand Opera House, York, for The Woman In Black, Monday to Saturday

AFTER 547 days, the Grand Opera House, York, steps out of the darkness and into The Woman In Black from Monday.

In PW Productions’ latest tour of Stephen Mallatratt’s adaptation of Susan Hill’s ghost story, Robert Goodale plays Arthur Kipps, an elderly lawyer obsessed with a curse that he believes has been cast over his family by the spectre of a “Woman in Black” for 50 years now.

Antony Eden is the young Actor he engages to help him tell that story and exorcise his fears, but soon reality begins to blur and the flesh begins to creep. Box office:

Bird song: Henry Bird, pictured in his Vampires Rock days, will be the special guest for You Can’t Stop The Beat

Community concert of the week: You Can’t Stop The Beat, Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, Tuesday, 7.30pm

GENERATION Groove and Community Chorus are joined by special guest Henry Bird, the well-travelled York singer and guitarist for Tuesday’s fundraiser.

“Concerts and performances have been on hold for well over a year and we’re all delighted to be back getting you singing and even dancing and raising money to help the wonderful Joseph Rowntree Theatre go from strength to strength,” say the organisers. Box office:

Waitress: Serving up a slice of musical pie at Leeds Grand Theatre from Tuesday

Musical of the week outside York: Waitress, Leeds Grand Theatre, September 14 to 18

MEET Jenna, a waitress and expert pie-maker who dreams of some joy in her life. When a hot new doctor arrives in town, life turns more complicated and challenging, but with the support of her workmates Becky and Dawn, she finds that laughter, love and friendship can provide the perfect recipe for happiness.

Sara Bareilles and Jessie Nelson’s comedy musical stars Lucie Jones as Jenna, Emmerdale’s Sandra Marvin as Becky, Evelyn Hoskins  as Dawn and Busted’s Matt Willis as Dr Pomatter. For tickets:  0113 243 0808 or at

Destiny calling: Kirk Brandon’s Spear Of Destiny are heading to The Crescent in York

Cult band you really should see: Spear Of Destiny, The Crescent, York, September 19

LEADING Spear Of Destiny for 38 years now, Kirk Brandon heads out on their Worldservice@35 tour on the back of releasing last November’s lockdown album.

Brandon’s post-punk band – featuring Adrian Portas (New Model Army/Sex Gang Children), Craig Adams (Sisters Of Mercy/The Cult /The Mission), Phil Martini (Jim Jones And The Righteous Mind) and saxophonist Clive Osborne – re-recorded 1985’s WorldService album during 2020.

The WorldService@35 tour features the album and B-sides in full plus an extended career-spanning encore at three Yorkshire shows: York, then Leeds Brudenell Social Club on September 21 and The Welly, Hull, September 25.

Pie thrower: Jonathan Pie will vent his anger at the truth vacuum at the Grand Opera House, York

Angriest man of the month award: Jonathan Pie, Fake News (The Corona Remix), Grand Opera House, York, September 19, 7.30pm

JONATHAN Pie, the no-holds-barred fictitious political broadcaster alter-ego of Tom Walker, is resuming his Fake News tour that began in 2019 and had to twiddle its agitated thumbs through lockdown.

In that hiatus, Walker continued to post Jonathan Pie content to his social-media channels, whether commenting on the global reaction to the 2020 pandemic, the Black Lives Matter movement or woke culture.

Now he unleashes his righteous rage once more on stage. Tickets for the York slice of Pie are on sale at

David Wilkinson launches Holocaust documentary Getting Away With Murder(s) with premiere screening at Everyman York

Getting Away With Murder(s) director David Wilkinson at Clifford’s Tower, the site of the former Castle in York, where in 1190 the city’s entire Jewish population were massacred

YORKSHIRE filmmaker David Wilkinson’s Holocaust documentary, Getting Away With Murder(s), has taken 18 years to reach the big screen.

Tonight, Everyman York, in Blossom Street, York, will host the world premiere at 6.30pm, concluding with a post-screening question-and-answer session with Wilkinson, chaired by Dave Taylor, the Independent city councillor for the Fishergate ward.

Exploring an overlooked aspect of the Holocaust, Wilkinson’s feature-length film reveals that “almost one million people in 22 countries willingly carried out the unprovoked murder of 11 million innocent men, women and children but 99 per cent of those responsible were never prosecuted”.

Examining the reasons behind the disregard for justice, Wilkinson says: “I filmed in ten countries, including the UK, where I question our turning a blind eye that allowed 400 alleged Nazi war criminals to live in this country, completely untroubled by justice.

“The only prosecution that ever occurred went ahead 53 years after the perpetrator’s arrival in London. He was sent to prison for murdering 18 Jews, although in reality, he was responsible for a great many more deaths.”

Director David Wilkinson at the train entrance to Auschwitz – Birkenau during the film-making for Getting Away With Murder(s)

Wilkinson’s studies brought him to York. “In 1190, Britain inflicted its own Holocaust when York’s Jewish population were massacred while under the King’s protection. 

“At a time of increasing attacks on Jews throughout England, they fled to the Castle – now the site of Clifford’s Tower – to be besieged by an incited angry mob, and then committed mass suicide rather than wait to be killed or be forcibly baptised. Those who did choose to be baptised and came out were slaughtered by the mob.” 

York in the 21st century is a different place, notes Wilkinson, who is chairman of film-makers Guerilla Films. The city now commemorates the massacre at Clifford’s Tower annually, along with Holocaust Memorial Day, as it acknowledges these atrocities and works to ensure that they never happen again.

York was one of the first British cities to receive City of Human Rights status, while York City of Sanctuary seeks to promote an environment of compassion and understanding in the city and provides support and assistance to refugees and asylum seekers.

York Interfaith Group meets regularly to promote mutual understanding between all of York’s faith groups and helps promote mixed-faith events hosted by its members.  

Alex Fischer showing director David Wilkinson around Court 600 at Nuremberg

Wilkinson says York is an example of how a city can turn itself around and learn from events that happened within its walls almost 900 years ago, as well as from more recent history. 

For many years, Jews thought that because of what happened at the Clifford’s Tower site, there was a ‘herem’ (ban) on Jews living in York. This was never the case and the relatively ‘new’ York Liberal Jewish Community (YLJC) is flourishing.

Celebrating its seventh birthday this year, and with around 100 members of all ages, YLJC is an active member in the York Interfaith Group and works regularly with other community and civic organisations.

YLJC is partnering with English Heritage and My Castle Gateway (for City of York Council) to achieve a new lasting legacy for the city’s history by seeking to influence the redevelopment plans of the car park at the base of Clifford’s Tower into a new public park.

The consultation plans include a small public plaza with a new memorial space to the 1190 massacre victims, yet to be detailed or funded.

“It seemed appropriate and particularly fitting to me that the city of York should be where I launch this film,” says documentarian David Wilkinson

Wilkinson explains how this influenced his choice when deciding where Getting Away With Murder(s) should be launched: “Normally with the films I make, the world premieres are either in London or at one of the prestigious film festivals such as Sundance or Edinburgh.

“I have thought long and hard about where to hold the important first screening of this film. As a Yorkshireman I have always felt singularly uneasy that my own county city was the setting for such a horrific crime.

“Therefore, it seemed appropriate and particularly fitting to me that the city of York should be where I launch this film.  It is an example of how a city and a Jewish community has and continues to move forward together.

“I am, therefore, delighted that the Everyman Cinema in York is supporting this important screening and that the York Liberal Jewish Communityhas agreed to co-host the event.” 

Wilkinson ponders the possibility of York erecting a “deferential memorial” to what many consider to be the darkest day in the city’s history. “In the documentary, I filmed numerous reverential memorials to the murdered Jews, in Berlin, Vilnius, Kaunas, Liepaja, Günzburg, Dachau, Vienna and Auschwitz,” he says.

Auschwitz survivor Arek Hersh, who features in Getting Away With Murder(s)

“The more locations I visited, the more I became convinced that York too should have its own deferential memorial to those Jews murdered in the city, no matter how long ago it took place.”

Lilian Coulson, chair of York Liberal Jewish Community, reflects on Wilkinson’s documentary: “When David approached us to discuss his film, we were amazed to be told about the extent of this ‘hidden’ part of all our history. 

“On a personal level, coming from a Jewish family who had to flee Nazi Germany to survive and whose grandfather was one of many lawyers working at the Nuremburg Trials, I have always wondered why nothing was done earlier by the outside world to stop the genocide of 11 million people, including six million Jews.

“Or what happened subsequently to those people who implemented this genocide. I look forward to viewing David’s film at its world premiere in York to learn more about what has happened (or not) since the Nuremburg Trials finished 75 years ago.”  

Lilian continues: “YLJC, as York’s only formal Jewish community, is delighted to welcome David and his film to this city and to help open doors to our friends here to promote his film to those who also wish to learn more about our more recent past.

Benjamin Ferencz, 101, the last living prosecutor at the Nuremberg Trials to give an eye-witness account, watches a 27-year-old Benjamin Ferencz prosecuting, as director David Wilkinson looks on

“We are lucky to live in a city that positively tries to encourage good interfaith relationships and tolerance and actively stretches out a hand to those in need. The continued dialogue of the proposed redevelopment of the Clifford’s Tower and Eye of York area provides a unique opportunity for us all to work together to commemorate its history and, at the same time, look positively to the city’s future.”  

Wilkinson has great hopes that tonight’s screening could launch a campaign to raise money for an improved memorial for the 1190 victims, to be sited within a wider contemplative space, as being proposed for the English Heritage site under the My Castle Gateway plans.

“This could be undertaken in conjunction with York Liberal Jewish Community, who are already fundraising to employ the first resident rabbi in York since the Middle Ages, to help grow and develop their community,” he suggests. 

“We hope that this will help in bringing about a successful outcome and that, after 831 years, the memory of those 150 people massacred inYork will be respectfully and informatively remembered.”  

 For tickets for tonight’s world premiere, go to:

Getting Away With Murder(s) director David Wilkinson at the gate to Auschwitz 1

Director’s statement by David Wilkinson

I HAVE been trying to make Getting Away With Murder(s), either as a film or a TV series, since 2003.

I was baffled as to why it has taken so long to find the funding as, to me, it was essential to know why so very few of the murderers of the Holocaust were ever prosecuted.

I had hoped that others would also wish to know this answer. 

When I was distributing his film Talking Sides in 2003, I discussed this in great detail with Sir Ronald Harwood as we drove around the country promoting his movie in key cities.

Ronnie wrote over a dozen plays, films, books and articles dealing with the Holocaust and told me that it “informed him”. When I mentioned to him that I was considering making the film, he instructed me to get on with it as he too wanted to know the answer.

The numbered arm of Auschwitz survivor Arek Hersh

It was intended that he be in the film (he later appeared in another documentary of mine), but his contribution in this was sadly not to be.

The film is dedicated to him. 

My sole motivation for making Getting Away With Murder(s) was simply to find that answer as to why so many got away with their crime – the crime of mass murder on an industrial scale.  

A simple question, you might think.

I knew long before I began filming that the answer(s) would be far from simple. 

The film is almost 200 minutes long. The subject is so complex that I found it impossible to fit the answers into a neat 90 or 110 minutes. One of the advantages of not having any funding from a broadcaster means that I was free to explore the subject as I felt in detail.” 

The poster for Getting Away With Murder(s), the Holocaust documentary set for British release on October 1, the 75th anniversary to the very day of the end of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. David Nicholas Wilkinson’s film covers what happened after the trial was over