Barbara is a BBC trained script and screenwriter, an author, composer and lyricist.
'Barbara's writing is bold, original and enormous fun. In her screenplay 'Cowboy Girls' she cleverly puts the female at the very epi-centre of the traditionally male genre of the Western.'

Anthony Minghella, Oscar winning
Screenwriter/Producer and Director

Rumpy Pumpy!



Rumpy Pumpy! was first performed at the Apollo Theatre in Newport, Isle of Wight in 2014.  Rumpy Pumpy! was backed by Arts Council England in 2015 and staged at The Kings Head Theatre and the Landor Theatre in London.  Rumpy Pumpy! opened at the Theatre Royal Windsor and moved on to The Union Theatre Southwark in November 2016.

When TWO BRAVE LADIES from the HAMPSHIRE WOMEN’S INSTITUTE, JEAN JOHNSON and SHIRLEY LANDELS, decide to campaign for the total decriminalisation of Prostitution and to improve conditions for WORKING GIRLS everywhere, warm and witty BROTHEL OWNER, HOLLY SPENCER decides to contact them. HOLLY had the ‘perfect brothel’ these W.I. LADIES could be looking for.

When the two conflicting worlds of WOMEN’S INSTITUTE and down to earth WORKING GIRLS collide for TEA and CRUMPETS, comedy and chaos ensue in this very BRITISH COMEDY. TEA and CRUMPETS together. A glorious mix of UNLIKELY FEMALES bonding and forming a Campaign to demonstrate for better conditions for WORKING GIRLS everywhere.

‘RUMPY PUMPY!’ is set against the firm backdrop of recession, redundancy and social breakdown in the UK. A Comedy for stressed, uncertain times with lonely people looking for love.


I first saw JEAN JOHNSON and SHIRLEY LANDELS, our two LADIES from the WI, in a TV documentary. JEAN and SHIRLEY decided to search for a safe, clean place for the GIRLS – a ‘perfect brothel’, determined to improve things for WORKING GIRLS began their Campaign to decriminalise prostitution. I approached JEAN and SHIRLEY and suggested the notion of a Musical based on their Campaign and they were delighted.

I spent time with several brothel Madames in Manchester, Stockport and Southampton, meeting their WORKING GIRLS and hearing their stories. It struck me that all the WORKING GIRLS were holding down two or three other jobs – supporting whole families, filling in for husbands and partners, often disabled, unemployed or redundant. I realised that the story of these WORKING GIRLS would inter-twine powerfully with the story of the TWO W.I. LADIES, as all of these women wanted the same thing: the decriminalisation of Prostitution.Bunny-Farm

A safe place where women could work where drugs and crime would then fall away. This story about British is also about the choices one makes in life and the consequences one sometimes suffers as a result of choices made.

Money and greed also figure in the play as themes, as does loneliness. ‘These are lonely times we live in’ moans HOLLY – ‘No one talks to each other anymore – they’re too busy texting!’ The title ‘RUMPY PUMPY!’ came early – my way of wrapping up a complex subject and creating something fun, frothy, but with a gritty edge. I was inspired to take on this dark and difficult subject matter and make something digestible and entertaining. Always the best way to change hearts and minds.

Rumpy Pumpy A4 v1 2015


Arts Council