The Matron

The Matron (Jo Kendall) is the borstal's health and pastoral care officer and is the only female character, and is also shown to be one of the kinder people in the borstal. However, she is, at times, rather patronising and condescending towards inmates, as seen most prominently when she gives her explanation to Meakin when he asks her why she never refers to them by their first names, plus her automaton response to Formby's question of why he is so far from his home, preventing visits.

Matron normally keeps a pleasant if impersonal demeanour, though she is occasionally irritated by Archer who tries to wind her up with deliberate awkward questions or calling out the inconsistencies and hypocrisies of the system.

She is also the one who screens the mail before giving it to the inmates, as seen when Archer's Fyodor Dostoyevsky novels are confiscated, and also when Toyne asks her to read his letter informing him of his wife's death, to which she responds "I've already read it." (Her flippant response was due to her mistakenly thinking that 'Candy' was just a household pet that had died).

The Matron's name is 'Miss Biggs' in the script, though it is not mentioned in dialogue or credited within the film.


"Your feet are disgusting,'re impudent and foolish. I know of vegetarians who don't eat meat, but they doesn't stop them from wearing shoes!"

1977 VersionEdit

In the BBC screenplay, Matron is portrayed by Bay White.

White's portrayal is an older, slightly more reserved Matron.

See AlsoEdit