Commissioned by Hull Truck Theatre (2017)
Published by Nick Hern Books
Ex-boxer Taylor Flint wants to put the past behind her but she’s got a fight on her hands.
Back on the Hull estate where she grew up, Taylor is drawn into running a boxercise class. They meet at The Six Bells pub, which landlady Nora runs as her own community hub. And for the local women, boxercise soon becomes more than a way to lose weight and have a laugh.
When the pub is threatened with closure, the class refuse to throw in the towel.
Inspired by a true Hull legend, they commit to an unlicensed Fight Night to raise cash. Yet as the countdown begins, it’s Taylor who finds herself on the ropes.
Mighty Atoms was the third play commissioned for the Hull Trilogy, a story-cycle of three dramas written for Hull UK City of Culture, 2017.
Barbara Buttrick, who inspired the story, left Hull to become the first World Women’s Boxing Champion in 1957. She won 30 professional fights in her career, with 12 knockouts.
The Hull Truck production was directed by Mark Babych and rehearsals included boxing training at the Vulcan ABC Boxing Club in Hull.
“The story of Hull’s famous boxing daughter Barbara Buttrick, poetically woven with a state of the nation look at the UK’s City of Culture … has a strength and power that really is quite incredible.”
“Mighty Atoms is a rawly funny and hopeful piece of work … if Buttrick could battle through, it suggests, so could anyone.”
“Whittington writes brilliantly for each character’s battles with everyday life, replete with humour, pathos, spunk and clout … Hull has found its voice, a mighty tiger’s roar.”
“Immensely likeable … Amanda Whittington pulls no punches with this rousing tale of solidarity.”