First panto in 17 years at Whelnetham Community Centre

Great Whelnetham Players presents Aladdin at Whelnetham Community Centre on December 12 and 13 ANL-141125-132642001
Great Whelnetham Players presents Aladdin at Whelnetham Community Centre on December 12 and 13 ANL-141125-132642001

A wealth of family fun is promised in the first pantomime to be staged in 17 years at a village community centre.

The Great Whelnetham Players production Aladdin is billed as a traditional panto and is part of a drive to put Whelnetham Community Centre, in Stanningfield Road, back at the heart of village life.

It treads the boards on Friday, December 12 and Saturday, December 13 and promises audience participation, music, a Dame and as an added twist a ghost and a pilot.

Producer Neil Pettit, chairman of the Players and vice chairman of the community centre committee, said: “We’re trying to put the community hub back together. It’s a nice size hall with good stage facilities, light and sound which hasn’t had a panto for 17 years and needs to be used.

“We’ve sold two thirds of our tickets in the first six days.”

In the last 18 months they have held a sold out variety night at the venue and two nights of a murder mystery dinner play. There was also a Halloween family fancy dress and a race night.

Mr Pettit added: “We’ve done an over 60s afternoon tea party which worked really well and brought people together. We’re looking at starting an over 60s club in the new year.

“It’s about bringing it (the centre) to the attention of local communities and getting outside people to think of it as a venue for their future.”

For tickets to the panto call Mr Pettit on 01284 388352.

The Players, which meet on a Thursday night, are also organising a New Year’s Eve night featuring a live band. Tickets are available from Sicklesmere Post Office.