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Sitting in Limbo's Patrick Robinson on meeting real-life Windrush Scandal victim Anthony Bryan: "He doesn't seem bitter"

The former Casualty talks playing real-life Windrush Scandal victim Anthony Bryan - and why he's glad the BBC didn't cast Idris Elba.

Sitting In Limbo - BBC
Published: Monday, 8th June 2020 at 2:20 pm

Patrick Robinson has spoken about meeting Windrush Scandal victim Anthony Bryan, whom he plays in upcoming BBC drama Sitting in Limbo.


The real-life Bryan faced deportation five years ago, despite having lived in the UK for over 50 years. He ended up spending a total of five weeks in detention centres, and it was only through the widespread publicity his case attracted that he was able to stay.

The series is penned by Bryan's brother, novelist Stephen S Thompson.

“The details were shocking,” Robinson said. “The bureaucracy was unbelievable. You don’t see the same caseworker, so you’re going back to the start so many times. That frustration, those hoops you have to jump through until you just give up and say: ‘Take me back.’”

Speaking to The Telegraph, the former Casualty actor detailed his impression of Bryan: “He was so cool, dignified, assured, measured – he doesn’t seem bitter about his experiences.

"He reminds me of one of my elder brothers who was always giving me life philosophies. I looked up to him [my brother]; he made sure I stayed on the straight and narrow.”

Like Bryan, Robinson has Jamaican heritage, which he believes lends a crucial element to his performance.

“I know that world, I appreciate it and I’m still involved in it. I was really keen they didn’t get someone like Idris Elba. No disrespect to him, but he’s Nigerian. He may be in tune with the West Indian world and he could do it I’m sure, but there’s a past that I have.”


Sitting in Limbo airs on BBC One on Monday 8th June at 8:30pm. If you're looking for more to watch, check out our TV guide.


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