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Sergeant Martin


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Looking through old issues of Dancing Times and Dance and Dancers, I came across references to Sergeant Martin. Being naturally curious and rather intrigued by this friendly looking gentleman I have tried to find out more about him.


YouTube has a very small video clip of him, plus there are references to him in Norman Lebrecht's book about Covent Garden. I know he died in 1981, and was touched to see obituaries in Dancing Times and The Stage.


Unfortunately I did not start visiting the ROH until 1985, so I missed meeting this kindly and avuncular man. 


I would be happy to know more about him and was wondering if anyone on this forum has any stories to tell?



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Isn’t he the man who used to sort of take charge of the standing tickets queue when we all used to queue outside the theatre in Floral St before the Market left. He used to wear some sort of uniform and we all thought it was him making us wait for hours till 7pm before they were sold ( when the performance was obviously sold out) but probably not his decision at all. He would come out to make sure the queue went in ...finally .. in order and in a proper fashion.... I’m sure that was him! 

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LinMM - Yes this sounds like it was Sergeant Martin. I read that he was also very good at shepherding the prommers, and also the children during schools' matinees to their correct places. 

I believe he started working at the ROH in 1949 and stayed there until his death in 1981. It's also said he knew all the regulars by name, and took part in quite a few Friends' Christmas entertainments.

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