Five Fascinating Facts about J. B. Priestley

Interesting trivia about the life of writer J. B. Priestley, author of An Inspector Calls

1. John Boynton Priestley (1894-1984) wrote the first play ever to be televised. Although he’s better known for An Inspector Calls, several of Priestley’s other plays are notable. Priestley’s romantic comedy When We Are Married was the first play to be televised unedited from a theatre, on 16 November 1938. (On the subject of romance, Priestley himself was something of a ladies’ man, despite having what one acquaintance described as a ‘potato face‘ – see the excellent David Low caricature of Priestley below for more on this.) An Inspector Calls (1945) is, however, his most popular play, centring on the titular inspector’s visit to the home of the wealthy middle-class Birling family. In the course of his interview with the family, Inspector Goole discovers that every member of the family played a part in the tragic suicide of a local working-class woman named Eva Smith.

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