Panto in Arundel – plus Arundel Castle exhibition

Arundel’s Nineveh House Players are back on the boards with panto as Christmas approaches.
Nineveh House Players - Queen Belladonna played by Phyl TateNineveh House Players - Queen Belladonna played by Phyl Tate
Nineveh House Players - Queen Belladonna played by Phyl Tate

They have already sold out their run from November 28-30 at the Norfolk Hotel, Arundel, but have now added a date at Yapton Village Hall on December 1, with tickets available from the Village Hall website. This year’s panto is Cinderella which comes in a new version especially written by Nineveh House Players founder Trevor Wyatt who also directs the show and appears in it as Cinderella’s father. Performances will be in aid of Alzheimer’s research charity.

“This is the 11th panto I have written and directed for charity and we have raised over £60,000 over the years. I have chosen this particular charity this year and I consider it so relevant to everyone. This is the fourth different charity we have raised money for. The performers are all ex-shopkeepers at Nineveh House which is an antiques and craft centre in Arundel. It's all the people that I have persuaded to join! I set the company up and I just wanted to do it for charity. The first one raised £2,000 or £3,000 and we just kept on going. This year we're at the beautiful Norfolk Hotel. I have made the story of Cinderella slightly different. I've made it so that she has got a mother and a father. The mother is the nanny and the father, years before, met these horrible witches in the wood and now he's lost his child and his wife. The witches are my take on the ugly sisters. They hate the children and they have got the power to create havoc. We've got about 20 in the cast. I'm directing and I'm in it. I'm Cinderella 's father. I've always been operatic trained and I have an operatic number with her mother but I deliberately give myself less dialogue than the others so that I'm able to watch them. I just love doing it for the charity.”

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The owner of Nineveh House has given a donation to help meet costs, and the company also brings in income by selling adverts in their programme.

Also in Arundel, Arundel Museum presents a major new exhibition: Rebuilding Arundel Castle, 1870s to 1900 (until January 18).

Museum spokeswoman Heather Gayler said: “Towards the end of the 19th century, Henry, the 15th Duke of Norfolk, embarked on a major 30-year building programme to restore and enhance the magnificent medieval exterior of Arundel Castle and its key features including the Keep. Also building the new Bakehouse Tower which gives Arundel its recognisable skyline today. At the same time, Duke Henry created an up-to-date country house interior, complete with electric lights, service lifts, central heating, and domestic water supply. Duke Henry’s aim was to secure the future of the Castle for the next thousand years and, as at least one historian has commented, the Castle that we see today is very much his legacy to Arundel. This autumn, continuing our celebration of the tenth anniversary of the opening of the new building in Mill Road, Arundel Museum will present a special exhibition exploring Duke Henry’s ambitious project. Entry to the exhibition is by Museum ticket (see website).”