One last blast for panto

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Next week will mark the end of an era for a Berwick theatre company.

The Emergency Services Panto group will be donning costume and greasepaint for the final time, as they put on their 20th – and final – show, A Blast From the Past, at the Maltings Theatre.

Over the years the ESPG, which was originally made up of emergency services and NHS staff, has raised £76,000 for the north Northumberland hospice.

Victoria Hedges, who writes and directs the shows along with Sophie Howard, said that this year’s panto is a great opportunity to visit some of the shows and favourite characters of years gone by. And it features a Timelord.

“Essentially, the doctor and his companion, Amy Puddle, are on holiday in Berwick when they realise that something is amiss! They then have to travel through past pantos in a race to catch some mysterious villains who are behind the trouble.”

When asked why this will be ESPG’s last performance after so many successful years, Victoria explained: “[It’s] purely due to a lack of emergency services/NHS cast members and due to the fact that many cast members have given a lot of years to the show but now feel they can no longer commit the time.”

A Blast From the Past is showing at the Maltings from February 4 to 6 at 7.30pm. Tickets £8 / £7 concs, Box (2 people) £24. Contact the box office on 01289 330999.