The Collection
The Collection

The Collection (1961)

The Collection

Harold Pinter

TV script


Divided between a flat in London’s Belgravia and a flat in Chelsea, the play focuses on two couples, James and his wife, Stella, and Bill and his friend, Harry. Stella returns from her dress collection in Leeds to tell James that she has been unfaithful. James confronts Bill, pressing for the truth, already determined to believe the worst. Bill confesses that he and Stella had only talked about spending the night together. It had amused him to perpetuate Stella's story to hurt Harry. Is this the truth? Stella is silent. The television version was first produced in 1961 by Associated-Rediffusion.

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Date of Composition: 1961

Linked Works

No Linked works have been added to this work record yet.

Linked Places

Leeds (Type of place: Location (within the fiction))


In The Collection Pinter establishes a narrative event where Bill and Stella may or may not have slept together in a hotel in Leeds. There is no indication or clue as to any location for Pinter's Leeds hotel.

Belgravia (Type of place: Location (within the fiction))

Belgravia, London

The location of Bill and Harry's house in The Collection. James and Stella live in nearby (an less up-market in 1960s Britain) Chelsea.

Fairmead Court, Taylor Avenue, Kew (Type of place: Place of composition)

Fairmead Court, Taylor Avenue, Kew, Richmond, Greater London TW9 4EA, England

Pinter moved here with his wife and son in the summer of 1960, following the success of The Caretaker. They lived here until 1963.


Grove Press on (20 December 1962)

Methuen & Co. Ltd. on (25 April 1963)

Published in The Collection and The Lover [also The Examination]. Second edition published 23/7/64, paperback edition published 17/3/66.

Faber and Faber Ltd on (8 April 1991)

Published in The Collection and The Lover


Harry (Age: forties, Male)

Stella (The Collection) (Age: thirties, Female)

James (The Collection) (Age: thirties, Male)

Bill (Age: late twenties, Male)


Full text on Drama Online (URL)

Type: Script

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Samuel French Website


The summary of the play is taken and adapted from Samuel French Publisher's website.