Anita Sullivan

Tinniswood Award 2024 shortlist

We are delighted to announce the shortlist for this year’s Tinniswood Award, which is organised by WGGB and The Society of Authors to recognise the best audio drama script of the year.

A prize of £3,000 is generously sponsored by the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society and will be presented at the BBC Audio Drama Awards (24 March 2024).

The shortlisted plays are:

Shon Dale-JonesCracking by Shôn Dale-Jones
Directed by John Norton, BBC Audio Drama Wales, BBC Radio 4 | Listen Here

Shôn’s 83-year-old mother is waiting for some test results from the hospital, so he goes back home to the Isle of Anglesey to visit her. In a moment of joking around, he cracks an egg on his mother’s head. All hell is let loose. Internet trolls appear in real life demanding that he stops abusing his mother and gets off the island. Cracking is a dark comedy about how quickly reality can slip into fiction and how fiction can become more true in our minds. It is about the fear of losing our parents and our collective outrage against things that do happen and things that don’t happen.

Taking real life events as inspiration, Cracking weaves fiction and reality together into a seamless whole and laughs at the dangers of not knowing you don’t know the truth.

Shôn Dale-Jones comes from the Isle of Anglesey, where he spent his entire childhood. He studied Drama at the University of East Anglia before training at Jacques Lecoq’s International Theatre School in Paris. He has been making theatre and radio for almost 30 years. His work has been translated into seven languages and played on six continents. He’s made 29 live shows. Cracking is his sixth play for radio.

John R GordonScooters, Shooters and Shottas by John R. Gordon

Produced by Urban Wolf, Team Angelica / The Art Machine, Podcast via Spotify, Apple etc | Listen here

After witnessing a murder, black queer roadmen and aspiring rappers Kola and Ranksy get caught up in a madcap moped chase around the ends that brings them to the yard of machete-wielding Rasta drag queen (and Kola’s ex) Bunni Boi. Which is when things really hot up… A vivid, funny, rackety tale of inner city living.

John R. Gordon writes and produces on the multi-award winning US Black gay TV series, Patrik-Ian Polk’s Noah’s Arc (2009-present) and was NAACP Image Award nominated for his work on the spin-off film. His short film Souljah (2009, dir. Rikki Beadle-Blair), a tale of a gay African refugee, won the Reeltime Best Film Award (2009). He created the Yemi & Femi graphic novella, given out free at Black gay clubs, and is the author of eight novels, most notably Drapetomania: the Narrative of Cyrus Tyler and Abednego Tyler, Lovers, a queer antebellum epic that won the 2021 Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBTQ+ Literature and was called “a dazzling work of imagination” by Michael Eric Dyson.

Huw BrentnallAbout a Dog by Huw Brentnall
Directed by Fiona McAlpine, All Allegra, BBC Radio 4 | Listen here

About a Dog is a black comedy set in rural Suffolk in the early Noughties. Danny Mouser is about to turn 30. He’s a tiler, a husband to Tracey, and a father to little Jade. But he’s always looking out for his wayward cousin Lee: poacher, former butcher, and all round wrong’un who recently lost his mum and has taken custody of her dog, Daisy.

One day when Danny hits a pheasant with his van he sets off a chain of unfortunate events that unfold over a weekend, including a crate of deadly home brew, an assault on a police officer and, worst of all, a case of mistaken-dog-identity. Danny’s values are put into stark relief, and he may have to choose between being wingman to a free spirit, and being a good husband and father to his family.

Huw Brentnall is an award-winning writer and actor out of Suffolk, trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. Work by Huw has been showcased by the Old Red Lion in Islington, Kino London, INK Writers’ Festival, and the BBC. Huw’s debut stage play, Quiz, enjoyed a sell-out run at the 2016 Edinburgh Fringe Festival and received five stars from Broadway Baby. Since then, Huw has written and performed extensively for stage, screen, and radio, and is currently developing a comedy-drama series, East of Eden, co-written with writer and actor Felix Uff. His most recent piece, About a Dog, commissioned by Allegra Productions for BBC Radio 4, was broadcast in October 2022. It is his first radio play.

Lindsay SharmanGhosted by Lindsay Sharman

Directed by the author, Long Cat Media, BBC Radio 4 | Podcast via Spotify, Apple etc | Listen here

Ghosted is a five-part serial that was released online in February 2023. It is a ghost story / psychological horror centred on the controlling, toxic friendship between two women.

Perched on a rain-battered cliff edge is a former lighthouse; now a charming, boutique hotel. Owner and sole occupant Beth has spent months renovating, absorbing its essence into her bones, preparing for her first guest to arrive.

But when they do, it’s a figure from Beth’s past that she has tried to forget.

Face-to-face for the first time in years, the pair must reckon with old mistakes, old grievances.

And something else, besides. Because the lighthouse has a past too.

Lindsay Sharman formed the audio drama company Long Cat Media with composer Laurence Owen. She has since then written almost 20 hours of independent audio drama, achieved over 1.7 million downloads globally, and garnered three audio drama industry nominations: ‘Best Fiction’ for series one of Mockery Manor in the 2020 British Podcast Awards; and two nominations for the ACE-funded serial The Ballad of Anne & Mary, including ‘Best Fiction’ in the 2022 British Podcast Awards, and ‘Best Podcast or Online Audio Drama’ in the 2022 BBC Audio Drama Awards. Before Lindsay started writing and co-producing audio drama, she worked for many years as a theatre-maker and actor.


The award was established by Writers’ Guild of Great Britain and Society of Authors to perpetuate the memory of Peter Tinniswood (pictured left) as well as to celebrate and encourage high standards in radio drama. Previous winners include Ian Martin, Sarah Woods, Oliver Emanuel, Morwenna Banks, Mike Bartlett, and Colin Teevan. Find out more.

We are very grateful to the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS) for their generous sponsorship, including the £3,000 prize.

Top photo of Anita Sullivan presenting the 2023 Tinniswood Award: BBC/TriciaYourkevich; photo of John R. Gordon, Baharei Husseini; photo of Huw Brentnall, Yellowbelly