The Incident Room

Theatre (thriller, contemporary)

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  • Pleasance Courtyard - Pleasance Two
  • 16:30
  • Aug 26
  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Suitability: 14+ (Restriction)
  • Country: United Kingdom - England
  • Group: New Diorama Theatre in co-production with Pleasance and Greenwich Theatre
  • Warnings and additional info: While there are no scenes or images of violence, this show contains themes that some may find distressing.
  • Accessibility:
    Audio enhancement system
    Relaxed Performance
    May not apply to all performances. You'll find more information about accessibile performances and how to book tickets in the accessibility tab below.
  • Babes in arms policy: Babies do not require a ticket
  • Policy applies to: Children under 2 years


It's 1975. The Millgarth Incident Room is the epicentre of the biggest manhunt in British police history. Follow Sergeant Megan Winterburn as she joins hundreds of officers working around the clock to find the man known as the Yorkshire Ripper. With public pressure mounting, the investigation resorts to increasingly audacious attempts to catch one of Britain's most notorious serial killers. From the award-winning creators of Secret Life of Humans and Down and Out in Paris and London, New Diorama go behind the scenes and investigate the case that broke the British police force.

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General venue access

  • Audio enhancement system
    Relaxed Performance
  • Accessible entry: Main queue in cobbled courtyard on far right. Wheelchair and level access via locked door at rear of venue - speak to staff or Box Office for access.
  • Wheelchair access type: Building Lift

  • Stairs: 20+
    Number of stairs is provided as guidance and is not in addition to any wheelchair access type (lift/ramp etc) stated above.

Each venue can contain several space with different accessibly information. Visit the venue page for full venue accessibility info

Captioned performances

  • Dates: 19 August
  • Type: Open
  • Booking options: You can book independently online, or contact our access team to book your tickets and request any specific seating locations or if booking a unit is required.

Relaxed performances

  • Dates: 20 August
  • Booking options: You can book independently online, or contact our access team for more information or to discuss any accessibility requirements.
  • Character Introduction Details
  • Additional information: Information not supplied

Be aware that this show features:

  • Characters expressing anger
  • Heavily dialogue-driven scenes
  • Show guide or synopsis or character list

Show does not feature:

  • Total Audience Black Out
  • Flashing Lights/Strobed Lighting
  • Loud/repetitive/high pitched/unexpected or overlapping sound
  • Distinctive smells
  • Special effects (e.g. smoke/bubbles/pyrotechnics)
  • Latex balloons
  • Audience required to walk around
  • Audience required to undertake directed movement
  • Audience required to sing/speak along with/for performer
  • Audience invited on stage
  • Performer goes into audience area
  • An intermission
  • Audience chill out area
  • Permission to move around and make noise
  • Permission to engage with performer

How and when to make an access booking

Our access tickets service is available to anyone who:

  • Would like to book specific accessibility services, e.g. a hearing loop, audio description headsets, captioning units, seating in relation to the location of the BSL interpreter
  • Requires extra assistance when at a venue
  • Has specific seating requirements
  • Is a wheelchair user
  • Requires a complimentary personal assistant ticket to attend a performance

Karen du Plessis 94 days ago

Excellent, highly recommend this for next year.

Ren Reynolds 114 days ago

This is not a Fringe show. It is an intense, well-acted, theatre piece that takes you back to the 70s with all the sweat-stained, beige, sexism of the era. A docu-drama that is made all the more tragic if you are aware of the historical facts that bookend the investigation into the so-called Yorkshire Ripper. Probably the best drama I've seen at the fringe since Keepers - which was in the same space.

C Cowe 114 days ago

Loved this, is my theatre choice for the fringe. Excellent acting and engaging story. Would recommend anyone to go and see this.

Glyn Cave 117 days ago

Brilliant! First class script, first class actors, first class production...gets ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ from me... just go see it while there’s tickets available!

alan Kennedy 118 days ago

First class theatre, the tension is superb as is the acting. 1975, did it really happen like this? Shocking!

Alastair Brown 120 days ago

Thought provoking with a terrific script and outstanding cast, The Incident Room manages to make the overstretched chaotic incident room as terrifying as the crimes themselves. Possibly the best ninety minute play I have ever seen - certainly the highlight (amongst stiff competition) of the 2019 fringe.

Julie Phillips 121 days ago

It fills so wrong to say I thoroughly enjoyed this show when you consider the subject matter! So I won’t. Instead let’s say the cast were excellent, some playing several roles. The set was appropriate and extensive. A very talented group of actors who we will look out for when we visit the Fringe again next year. I’d give them a 5* review

Caroline Coles 121 days ago

Highly detailed emotional performances that covered the facts and the background issues eg sexism in the police force ( leading female actor not in the centre of the lineup at curtain call?) . Excellent use of original footage and an atmospheric brooding set. Liked the handout with other media so I can see "where are they now" . 4 and half stars

Prof Teak 122 days ago

This is a strong great cast, with many cast members playing multiple roles. The characters are dimensional and listen and talk to one another well. As true crime appears to be the buzz popular genre of this year's fringe, this one is the best.
More than an episode of CSI,, this story is about compassion, and loyalty and gender equality and should not be missed.

Danielle Seatter 122 days ago

This is the best thing we have seen at Fringe, although it is hands down the best thing we have seen for a long time. Theatre at its absolute finest, moving and atmospheric, it really felt like we were there in the incident room itself. I was moved to tears in parts. Extremely impressive acting from the female roles, captivating performances from the whole cast. I can't wait to see where this will be performed next.

The Ockerts 125 days ago

Visually stunning set with great light effects and background music. The Incident Room's complex plot deals with gender roles of the 1970s, the role of ego in processing information, comic relief mixed with intense scenes makes for a historically compelling plot!

LTW 125 days ago

A great script played out by a cast of very passionate actors.

We truly felt transported to the incident room, sharing the thrill of discovering any new leads, and the frustration that came with every dead end!

Although the 90 minutes flew by, perhaps the play could be reduced to 75 minutes as we noticed that many people in the audience were not prepared to stay the full 90 minutes - perhaps expecting the usual 60 minute show?

Nonetheless, its a gripping adventure not to be missed. Far better production than the few other "murder mystery" recreations we saw - Father of lies (it was ok), Drowning (good cast but script was not well developed), and Bible John (poor script, high school standard).

Highly recommend. Please be prepared for a 90 minute show!

Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.

British Theatre Guide (5/5 stars) 108 days ago

True crime dramas are currently enjoying a surge in popularity, tabloid sensationalism disguised in a documentary format, the gory details just as weirdly fascinating as they’ve always been.The Incident Room is based on the true story of Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, who evaded the West Yorkshire police for years,...

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The Awkward Corner (4.5/5 stars) 108 days ago

Performances by the devising ensemble are all excellent, and they strongly convey the feelings that were gripping a nation at this time. The show is slick with it’s tech, and while the lighting might have been toned down, the sound effects, soundtrack used and the set still conveyed the full potential of this show. With elements of dark humour, an emotionally charged storyline and a huge slice of feminist true crime drama, it’s no wonder that this show has a full house each day and is selling out.

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Everything Theatre (5/5 stars) 108 days ago

The Incident Room may be too bleak for more sensitive viewers, but this is an absorbing and emotive play with real heart, and plenty of unexpected but much-needed humour. If you’ve missed it at the Fringe, look out for its transfer to the New Diorama Theatre next year.

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Edinburgh Festivals Magazine (4/5 stars) 109 days ago

The five-year manhunt for the serial killer dubbed the Yorkshire Ripper is meaty fodder for deliberation, having already inspired a host of documentaries and books on different aspects of the sprawling investi...

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The Wee Review (4/5 stars) 110 days ago

Looking into the heart of a famous and controversial investigation, we join police hunting the Yorkshire Ripper as they set up a centralised incident room in Millgarth, Leeds. It is to be a long case, dogged by an excess of information and too broad a search area – especially for...

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Miro Magazine (3/5 stars) 113 days ago

It’s as if there are two shows running parallel to The Incident Room, one a police cop thriller and one a more abstract treatise of victimhood. Both strands acknowledge each other and share in-jokes, but neither able to totally empathise with each other’s point of view.

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Voice Mag (5/5 stars) 114 days ago

A defining moment in our history brought to life on stage in a gripping, chilling and tasteful way. New Diorama Theatre are one to watch.

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Broadway Baby (4/5 stars) 115 days ago

True crime obsession has reached new heights in the past few years with a seemingly endless stream of documentaries, books and podcasts available to armchair sleuths everywhere. And now true crime has reached the theatre. The Incident Room tells the story of the five year manhunt for the Yorkshire Ripper...

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British (4/5 stars) 115 days ago

It’s a fine example of docu-drama, highly recommended.

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Broadway World (4/5 stars) 119 days ago

The Incident Room springs into life, and it's here that Olivia Hirst and David Byrne's script picks up this astonishing crime drama. There is something specifically period about Beth Flintoff and Byrne's directorial vision. Not in Tom Selleck moustaches or the mutton chops, but in the casual misogyny and old-school...

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Whats On Stage (3/5 stars) 119 days ago

There aren't many old-fashioned well-made plays to be found on the Fringe and for that reason alone The Incident Room feels like a throwback to a different age. Its subject matter too – the failure of the police investigation into Peter Sutcliffe, the so-called Yorkshire Ripper, the man who murdered...

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Deadline News (5/5 stars) 120 days ago

The Incident Room is as close as you could get to seeing an episode of Line of Duty live on stage. But unlike most police procedurals the focus is squarely on those most affected by the Yorkshire Ripper’s crimes: the victims.

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The Stage [paywall] (4/5 stars) 121 days ago

Peter William Sutcliffe. The Yorkshire Ripper. The man who murdered 13 women in Yorkshire and Greater Manchester in the late 1970s. The man it took the West Yorkshire Police more than five years to apprehend, despite interviewing him face-to-face nine times. That widely criticised investigation – the problems, the paperwork...

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Daily Business Magazine (5/5 stars) 123 days ago

This is a polished performance by a hard-working team who were deservedly rewarded with a standing ovation.

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The Telegraph (4/5 stars) 124 days ago

It was supposed to be the hyper-efficient nerve-centre of operations - but the incident room at Millgarth police station, Leeds, set up to co-ordinate the investigation into ‘The Yorkshire Ripper’ was plagued by human error, office politics and administrative overload. As a result, Peter Sutcliffe was able to terrorise the...

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Exeunt 125 days ago

I’ve never been someone who was into “true crime” as entertainment, save a Lizzie Borden biography phase as a teen. But lately, I’ve seen a number of stage shows that have sent me into an ethical quandary over their use of real-life murders in the narrative. In some of these shows...

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Edinburgh Guide (5/5 stars) 126 days ago

“Sunday afternoon .. put your feet up on the sofa and open the News of the World. What is it that you want to read?  Naturally, about a murder.”  George Orwell, “Decline of the English Murder,” 1946 During the 1970s, Peter Sutcliffe murdered at least thirteen women and attempted to...

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The Guardian (3/5 stars) 127 days ago

From the moment the name was coined by the press, the Yorkshire Ripper became more myth than man. He spawned hoaxes, generated hysterical headlines and inspired countless books, documentaries and fictional depictions in the years after his eventual arrest. As one survivor predicts in New Diorama’s lastest show, the latest...

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Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.

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Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.