YOU may have seen Samuel Edward-Cook in the role of Danny Whizz-Bang in the first series of the BBC's Peaky Blinders.

Or you may recall him from his days on the York stage as Sam Coulson, performing with York Musical Theatre Company and in the summer-school shows at the Grand Opera House before he headed off to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London in 2008.

"I'm now living in Hull after I moved up from London in March," he says. "I did ten years in London, starting with RADA, and I was ready for home. My partner is from up here too and we wanted to be nearer to her family."

Hull Truck Theatre snapped him up to play the dark, intimidating bruiser Bill Sikes in Oliver Twist over the Christmas season, and he now follows up that tour de force by bringing an important play to East Riding Theatre in Beverley from Saturday for a week.

Originally developed by Second Shot Productions, a social enterprise that exists to give serving prisoners and ex-offenders opportunities within the creative industries, Glory Dazed brings to light relevant issues surrounding the mental health of ex-servicemen and women as they seek to re-integrate into civilian society.

Written by Cat Jones, it was first performed at the Edinburgh Fringe, in Adelaide, Australia, and at the Soho Theatre, London, and Sam now returns to the lead role of ex-squaddie Ray, as well as producing and co-directing the revival.

Glory Dazed is set in a backstreet pub in Doncaster, where Ray, mentally scarred from his time in Afghanistan, bangs on the door after hours. His old friend, Simon, the pub landlord, feels he has no alternative but to let him in but, inside, are Leanne, a teenage barmaid, and Carla, Ray's ex-wife and the mother of his children. The stage is set for "off-kilter drama and heart-wrenching recriminations".

"When we did the first production in 2012, it was developed and rehearsed with Cat Jones working in the prison at the HMP Young Offenders Institute in Doncaster," says Samuel. "The original group of prisoners that helped Cat develop the play were incredibly helpful during rehearsals, and, for me, that was fantastic research.

"The play is almost verbatim with actual experiences being described. So, in that sense, it's incredibly brave, honest, quite brutal theatre, as Cat didn't want to hold back.

"What the audience gets to see is the effect of what it's like to live with someone with PTSD, through the character of Ray, who's trying to convince his wife to go on the run with him when he's being pursued by the police after a violent assault."

Glory Dazed has made an impact, wherever it has played with its story of love, loss and honour. "When we took it to the Edinburgh Fringe we just missed out on a Fringe First award, but we did win a Holden Street Theatres Adelaide Fringe award in south Australia, where there's a large military presence that served in Afghanistan and Iraq," says Samuel.

"The funding from that award gave us the chance to be there for six weeks, and after the Soho Theatre saw the show in Edinburgh, we were asked to do it in London too."

York Press:

Samuel Edward-Cook as Danny Whizz-Bang, right, in the first series of Peaky Blinders

The Beverley revival has taken a while to come to fruition. "It all came together when I moved to Hull in the spring, and I met up with Adrian Rawlins, the East Riding Theatre artistic director. Two years ago we were both filming for roles in the ITV series Innocent, and, knowing I was from York, he kept saying, 'if you ever come back north, get in touch to do a show here'," Samuel recalls.

"I put together two ideas for shows; one was about a trawler disaster in Iceland, called The Deep, and given what happened to Hull trawler men in 1968, I knew there would be interest in it. So far I've workshopped it and done a rehearsed reading at the Icelandic Embassy to an invited audience.

"The other was Glory Dazed, a play and a subject I know well, as, since leaving RADA, I've played lots of characters who have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), such as ex-servicemen afflicted by it and Danny Whizz-Bang in Peaky Blinders."

When Samuel first performed Glory Dazed, the play visited Hull Truck Theatre. "We were only able to do three performances but we lost funding to do more shows, so it's my hope and ambition that eventually we can get funding to do a northern tour in the not-too-distant future, because the Yorkshire Regiment is such a major regiment in the Army and is always sent in early in conflicts."

Glory Dazed is being staged in association with Hull 4 Heroes, the Hull charity that supports military veterans, aiming to ensure their return to civvy street and regular employment is as seamless as possible.

"Paul Matson, who founded and runs that charity, meets people who are struggling every day with mental-health issues and are contemplating suicide," says Samuel. "There's more that needs to be done to deal with PTSD and the transfer from the military to civilian life is not as smooth as it should be."

Glory Dazed will resonate with Yorkshire veterans over the week ahead in Beverley. "The Yorkshire Regiment is possibly the most active and most respected regiment in the British Army. Yorkshire's veteran community need our help and support in order to make the transition back into civilian life after sacrificing so much to protect our country," says Samuel.

"Ten per cent of the UK prison population is made up of ex-servicemen; this needs to change. To be performing the play back in Yorkshire, where it first came to life, is a real privilege. We hope that veterans who see the play will feel reassured they are not alone. There is support and guidance out there for them, and with the help of our partnered charity, Hull 4 Heroes, we can give something back to the men and women who have given everything to protect us."

Samuel Edward-Cook in Glory Dazed, East Riding Theatre, Beverley, January 26 to February 2. Box office: 01482 874050 or at