Stealing Seven Hens

Gordon Meredith returns to Stage4Beverley to bring history alive through stories and music and is joined this time by musician Phil Simpson.

Stealing Seven Hens is a journey from rural East Yorkshire in the early 19th century to the far off colonies of Australia where men and women convicted of the most trivial of crimes were taken. This dramatisation puts the 19th century judicial system in the dock and asks if such a harsh punishment really did fit the crime?

The convicts we meet include the infamous Snowden Dunhill of East Yorkshire who, along with nine other members of his notorious family, were transported to meet a variety of fates.

As the plights of local rogues, vagabonds and thieves are told, this piece of Folk Theatre features traditional & contemporary music & song inspired by material from the ‘Broadside Ballads’; an extensive collection of folk tales about the terrors and triumphs of the many thousands of people who were dumped on the far side of the world.

Stealing Seven Hens follows Gordon’s previous shows at the last two festivals, ‘Swinging the Lamp’ and ‘Broadside On’ that have both gone on to be performed elsewhere in the region and received great praise…

“What a powerful show: humble, well-crafted and beautiful! A balance of stories, music, eye-witness accounts, pain, fun and tears. Impressive!”

Superb acting quality singing and a production which gripped from start to finish.”

Broadside On is an evocative history of the Beverley shipyard. An amalgam of archival images, hauntingly beautiful music and an excellently crafted script, the play brings to life oral histories that capture our local heritage.”

We thought Broadside On was superb today – really interesting content and brilliantly acted.

It is the best thing I have ever seen at the theatre!!”

Stealing Seven Hens at the Stage4Beverley Festival, East Riding Theatre, Saturday February 15th 2020 at 12.00 noon.

Early bird Tickets £10 / Standard price £12

Showcase Gig: Refracture

Performance students present a new piece featuring improvised conversations, ambient textures, and fragmented grooves.

The University is putting home-grown talent centre stage once again, as it invites current students from its acclaimed popular music courses to show the city what they’re made of in one of this year’s student showcases.

A not-to-be-missed preview starring the next generation of artistic talent to come out of Hull, the gig will focus on contemporary songwriting, featuring both bands and solo performers.

Learn more about the young people behind Hull’s thriving creative scene who are playing a pivotal role in the musical life of the city.

Admission is free, but booking is essential.

Cultural Transformations – What’s Next? Issues and Challenges for Future Cities of Culture

Cultural Transformations – What’s Next? Issues and Challenges for Future Cities of Culture from the evaluation of Hull UK City of Culture 2017

The Culture, Place and Policy Institute are pleased to announce that booking is now open for our conference Cultural Transformations – What’s Next?: the final evaluation of the impacts of Hull UK City of Culture 2017.

We invite you to join us on 19-21 November 2019 for the release of the Hull UK City of Culture 2017 final evaluation report, along with a stimulating programme of insight and debate. Over three days, we will revisit the notion of culture-led urban transformations, encompassing perspectives from academics, practitioners, policy makers, funders and community members, and firmly embracing an international outlook. Questions about immediate impacts sit alongside the investigation of longer-term implications, and the conference explores the challenges for Cities of Cultures to keep the transformative momentum going.

Reflections are offered by Oonagh McGillion (Derry City & Strabane District Council), Claire McColgan (Culture Liverpool) and Martin Green (formerly Hull 2017 Ltd).

Keynote speakers, including film-maker, Sean McAllister and Professor Lynn Froggett (Professor of Psychosocial Welfare, University of Central Lancashire), join panellists from academia and the cultural sector, to consider issues for future urban cultural strategies, ranging from social equity to nurturing local talent and grassroots-led policy-making.

For further information and to book a place, please visit

Back to Bransholme: A 1940’s punk-pop circus opera

Have you seen the ghost? The ghost of the airman? Plenty have. I wonder why he’s here, what he wants ?

It’s 1942 and where North Point Shopping Centre now stands is RAF Sutton on Hull, home to the Fabric Bashers – hundreds of women making the fabric for the barrage balloons floating over the Humber.

One still, starlit evening, Flight Lieutenant Frank Dobbs and Basher Edie Wilson lindyhop their way to love at the RAF dance. But wartime’s uncertain, and Frank’s about to begin a journey that’ll change their lives forever…

Forty years later, punk pop bangs through the estate and young punks Jimmy and Karen fight to stay together against all the odds. It ‘ant always been easy, but they’re meant for each other…aren’t they?

Circus, opera, dance and seven decades of music collide in this epic journey through the heart and history of Bransholme, the triumphs, loves, losses and laughs of the 1940’s to now –

Grab your big coats, winter woolies and the people you love, and join us for sing-along anthems, soaring spectacle, and a hell of a lot of heart.


A mother. A schoolgirl. A businesswoman. A widow. A bride-to-be. And a world-famous singer. Six women on the cusp of a crisis.

In this hilarious & often heart-breaking one-woman play by Joanna Murray-Smith, we explore humanity on the edge of a breakdown. Why does your newborn baby keep crying? How do you cope when your husband cheats on you? How do you fill your days once your life partner dies? How do you survive after a series of life catastrophes?

Directed by Becky Hope-Palmer, Director of She Productions’ sell-out show It’s Different For Girls & performed by She’s first-class chameleon Alice Rose Palmer, Bombshells will be a night of cabaret & Victoria Wood style entertainment.

Tickets: Full £13.50 / Conc. £12.50 / Preview £8



Francesca Beard is a Malaysian writer and performance poet who has been based in London for most of her adult life. She has been the writer-in-residence at the Tower of London and Hampton Court as well as working on her solo shows such as Chinese Whispers.

William Letford, roofer as well as poet, received the New Writer’s Award from theScottish Book Trust in 2008 and has taken part in translation projects throughLebanon, Iraq, and Palestine

LOCATION: Hull Truck Theatre, Studio Theatre, 50 Ferensway, Hull, HU2 8LB
WARNINGS: Under 18’s must be accompanied by an adult
ACCESS: There are limited wheelchair spaces available. If you are unable to transfer in to a seat please do not book a ticket online, we have wheelchair spaces held back from general sale for you. Please book by calling 01482 323638. If you are unable to communicate via telephone you can also email



“What would dementia look like? It would look like a broken-down cello, all the strings stretched and breaking.”

Hidden is a new theatre piece written by award-winning poet, playwright and performer, Louise Wallwein (MBE), created through a programme of public engagement and creative enquiry into the lived experience of young onset dementia. Hidden addresses the challenges that both people living with young onset and their loved ones are faced with in a powerful and uncompromising piece.

Cast: Susan Aderin, Danielle Henry, Robin Lyons, Alexandra Mathie. Musicians: Jaydev Mistry, Andrea Vogler, Svetlana Mochalova

Writer: Louise Wallwein. Director: Sue Roberts. Lighting Designer: Alastair West. Stage Manager: Caitlin Chatfield. Producer: Jacqui Barnes, Camerata in the Community.

Produced by Manchester Camerata with the kind support of the Wellcome Trust.

RUNNING TIME: 1 hr 30 mins
LOCATION: Hull College, The Horncastle Building, Charlotte Street, Hull, HU1 3DG
WARNINGS: Under 16’s must be accompanied by an adult
ACCESS: If you have any access provision requirements, please contact in advance of the event but please book your ticket first.

Front Row

Join the audience for a live broadcast of Front Row, BBC Radio 4’s flagship arts programme and featuring an exuberant mix of interviews, discussion, and performance.

LOCATION: Hull College, The Horncastle Building, Charlotte Street, Hull, HU1 3DG
WARNINGS: Min age 8+ (under 16’s must be accompanied by an adult)
ACCESS: If you have any access provision requirements, please contact in advance of the event but please book your ticket first.



A multi- media performance by students from Sirius Academy West, Ganton School and the Hull Music Service.

Fusing words by the poet laureate Simon Armitage on an intergalactic theme in this year of celebration of the moon landings, with music by award-winning composer and musician John Harle and a light show by Hull-born architect Richard Scott.

With thanks to Wellington College International Shanghai.

LOCATION: Hull College, The Horncastle Building, Charlotte Street, HUll, HU1 3DG
WARNINGS: Under 16’s must be accompanied by an adult
ACCESS: If you have any access provision requirements, please contact in advance of the event but please book your ticket first.

Panto of the Dead

From the team that brought you ‘Harry Panto’ and ‘Hocus Panto’ comes a spook-tacular half term treat to die for!

Hold on to your funny bone as we take you on an adventure to the other side. Follow ‘JoJo’ as she searches for the book of the dead to free her family from the clutches of the evil VooDoo Doctor.

A fast paced, highly entertaining Halloween pantomime featuring pop songs, magic and puppets – a guaranteed scream!

New Year’s Speakeasy at Trinity Market

An evening of decadence and debauchery…bring in the New Year with the House of Royale and our Trinity Market 1920s Speakeasy!
Sit back, relax and let our entertainers dazzle and delight you. Then make your own fun and dance the night away once the cabaret finishes.

Dressing the part is positively encouraged, and there will be a prize for best dressed! Think feathers, pearls, suspenders, spats, flapper girls and Gatsby guys.

Food and drinks will be served all evening, including a bespoke New Year’s Eve cocktail menu and special local gins! Bring cash for the raffle and for our vintage photo booth, where you can have your photos of the night permanently etched onto a tin plate keepsake.

Roxie from the House of Royale has gathered a crop of the the UK’s top performers to entertain you for the evening. You can expect to see burlesque, cabaret, stilt walkers, dancers, aerialists, fire breathers, singers, acrobats, and even a giant martini glass, to name a few!

Little Women

Director Jake Smith’s has delighted audiences at ERT over the last two years with shows It’s A Wonderful Life and Goodnight Mister Tom. This Christmas Jake is thrilled to bring another timeless classic to ERT’s stage.

Adapted for the stage by local playwright Laura Turner, Little Women is a classic coming-of-age story written by Louisa May Alcott.  With their father fighting in the American Civil War we follow four young sisters Meg, Jo, Amy and Beth on their adventures as they struggle with family, love, individuality and finding their place in the world as they grow into Little Women.

A warm and heartfelt story, Little Women promises to be a wonderful seasonal celebration for the whole family to enjoy whether you are age 10 or 100.

Adapted for the stage by Laura Turner

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Directed by Jake Smith

Tickets Full £19.50 / Conc. £18.50 / Friends £10% off / Students & U23 £14 / Child £12

I Wanna Be Yours

A Paines Plough and Tamasha production 

Ella is from Yorkshire. Haseeb is from London. They order a pizza. House red for Ella. Hot chocolate for Haseeb. 

“I think I’m falling in love with you.”

People and playlists. Christmas and Eid. Travelcards and Mega buses. London to Leeds. 

Love is more than just a game for two. Especially when there’s an elephant in the room. 

A tender, funny, lyrical play about finding love and holding onto it with everything you’ve got. I Wanna Be Yours is the debut play from slam poetry champion Zia Ahmed.

Zia is from North West London. He is a London Laureate, having been shortlisted to be the Young Poet Laureate for London 2015/16. He is a former Roundhouse Poetry Slam champion.

I Wanna Be Yours was developed with support from the Channel 4 Playwrights’ Scheme.

Tickets £10/12

The Stephen Frost Improv Allstars

Four brave performers arrive with no script and not the faintest idea of what will happen. Willed on by a supportive crowd (that’s you!), through improvisation they create sketches and comic dramas that are amazingly inventive and sometimes take off into flights of surreal brilliance. Stephen Frost’s Improv Allstars grew out of the popular TV show Whose Line Is It Anyway? and the Allstars troupe has played festivals all over the world.

Tickets £14.50/15.50


Saturday 2nd, Sunday 3rd & Wednesday 6th November 7.30 pm

It is Cheshire in the 1930s. In the countryside, the tractor is taking over from the horse.

Wilf is a farmer whose traditional methods have served him well all through his hard working life. When his younger brother-in-law Totty insists on introducing new technology into their family business, Wilf fears that the balance of nature will be upset. A family feud develops and things get worse for the family when a mysterious stranger appears in the form of a harmless priest, but the family fear that he is possibly a ghost or an angel or… a Boggart, a spirit portentous of disasters.

They decide to take action and their hilarious ineptitude and the interference of the eccentric busybody Mrs Mayse has dire consequences for the family.

A funny and thought-provoking story from the past which has something important to say about our present concerns for the environment.

Tickets £12-14

The Lightless Pumpkin

29th – 31st October 2pm & 4 pm

Written by Jessica Duffield

In a vegetable patch,
In a nearby town
Lives a little Lightless Pumpkin
Who turned his frown upside down.
He ran away in tears
‘Cause he hadn’t found his light,

But thanks to his new friends he learnt

Being ‘different’ is alright!

The Lightless Pumpkin is back and he needs your help! After realising that not every pumpkin needs to become a Halloween lantern because we are all unique, it is his turn to teach his neighbours to welcome diversity and difference, when a pair of French snails threaten life in the vegetable patch…

Wands at the ready for the next instalment from our favourite veggie!!

The production begins in the East Riding Theatre cafe bar and travels to Beverley Library (100m from the theatre) and back again. The cast and theatre staff will lead the audience in a short procession on an accessible route.

Tickets £5-6.50

Family Ticket of Four £20 (Min of 2 Children and at least one accompanying adult)