Award-winning BBC radio drama remembers Liam

Image for On It, an award-winning BBC radio drama starring Calder Valley actors Dominic Brunt and Joanne Mitchell
Image for On It, an award-winning BBC radio drama starring Calder Valley actors Dominic Brunt and Joanne Mitchell

The tragic story of a young Calder Valley boxer who lost his life to heroin addiction has been turned into an award-winning BBC radio play.

“On It”, penned by exciting and accomplished writer and actor Tony Pitts, won the Best Audio Drama (Single Play) at the BBC Audio Drama Awards at the end of last month.

Hosted by Doctor Who star David Tennant, the awards were presented at BBC Broadcasting House.

The 45-minute afternoon drama “On It” was first broadcast in October 2011, two years after Liam Jones , of Mytholmroyd, died of an overdose at the age of 29. It is to be repeated on Radio 4 on Tuesday, February 19, at 2.15pm.

Tony Pitts, who played loveable rogue Archie Brooks in Emmerdale Farm for 10 years until 1993, is also a boxing coach who conquered some of his own demons through the sport and helped others at his Hebden Bridge club.

A BBC spokesperson said the emotional play tells “an all-too-familiar story that is difficult but not shocking. And that’s the shame. ‘On It’ is a play full of gut-wrenching love, determination and the hope that one day there may be a full stop instead of another comma in the story of every family with this fight on its hands.”

A young man, Liam, joins Tony’s boxing ring in an attempt to escape his drug addiction.

Tony, who also won a Sony Award for the play, said: “It is an honour and a privilege to have won the award.

“We loved Liam a lot and it was a desperate time.”