Neville, Gordon, Angus and Roy, a middle management team from Pennine Spring Water, Ltd., are sent on a "business outbound team building weekend" in the Lake District. What should have been a run-of-the-mill orienteering exercise turns into a slapstick nightmare when Neville's team boat hits the rocks leaving them stranded on an uninhabited island—the first people ever to be shipwrecked inland. These middle-aged men are not suited for life in the wilds and quickly begin to show it. Neville, the captain of the team, tries to be objective and practical; Gordon quickly moves from caustic to cruel, and stays there, taking little responsibility for anything; Roy, recovering from a recent mental breakdown, goes deeper into prayer; and the mild-mannered Angus does his best to remain cheerful until Gordon's constant hounding drives him to violence. Their attempts at teamwork create one humorous situation after another as they backfire, and after which Gordon's belittling drives them apart. Roy seems to suffer another breakdown, running into the woods with just the right equipment to hang himself, causing Angus to snap and come at Gordon with a knife. The situation pitches on the brink of catastrophe when suddenly a chopper spots them and begins to descend. But the events on the island have changed them so much that even imminent rescue can't bring back who they were.
"Tim Firth's NEVILLE'S ISLAND…is that rare event: a genuinely good new play…it's a comedic, adult Lord of the Flies…" —The Guardian (UK). "NEVILLE'S ISLAND…is a non-stop, whitewater deluge of comedy both sophisticated and slapstick…British playwright Firth takes a perfect premise and shoots it to the extreme, flipping his fish out of water, watching them flop around a bit, and then masterminding the inevitable feeding frenzy." —New Mexican. "Firth has an assured comic touch…But there are scenes of great dramatic suspense amid the laughter, and many poignant moments which reveal a writer of real compassion…" —Telegraph.