The Reading Fringe Festival 2020 is open for applications from performers. This year’s festival will take place from Friday 17 July to Sunday 27 July.
Graham Turner presented a film about the route of the Inner Distribution Road (IDR) before it was built, at the History of Reading Society (HoRS) on 15 January. The venue, the Abbey Baptist Church, was almost full and the audience were entranced as changing scenes of the streets of Reading in the 1960s and 70s appeared before their eyes.
We are greeted at the Progress Theatre by a smiley and welcoming Chris Moran, director of this production, Terry Pratchett’s Wyrd Sisters. Chris is a Progress veteran. The director’s notes in the programme are in tune with how she is in person: full of enthusiasm and love for theatre and up for a challenge. As we are talking I realise that I recognise her voice and my other half kindly points out that she played Joyce in Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls. Of course she did, and she was excellent in it.
Funchal, on the island of Madeira, has more than enough drinking fountains for a dedicated tourist trail. If we had to pick one that really stands out for twinning, it would have to be this one which is situated up on the hill just north of the casino. There is also a very circuituous and tenuous link back to the Whitley Pump.
StrikeUp theatre will be running acting courses at the Rising Sun Arts Centre starting on Thursday 9 January and running until 26 March. The morning course will cover ‘the actor and power’ and ‘the actor and pace’ and the evening course ‘the actor and truth’ and ‘the actor and the audience’.
Thank you to all our readers and regular and occasional contributors for making it a wonderful year on Katesgrove Hill. We hope that you continue to enjoy reading or contributing to the Whitley Pump in 2020.
Major Archibald Henry Buchanan-Dunlop of Whitley Rise was pictured in the Berkshire Chronicle of 8 January 1915 beneath the headline “Major who sang carols between the trenches”. A short paragraph beneath reported that he was one of the “moving spirits” in the Christmas truce between British and German troops on the Western Front [ref 1].
The Red Cow public house at the corner of Southampton Street and Crown Street was mentioned at last week’s Reading Borough Council (RBC) planning applications committee. Julie Williams, RBC acting planning manager, told the committee that during the ongoing refurbishment developers had been asked to rebuild a section of wall. This was because they had laid bricks in stretcher rather than Flemish bond and, as the pub is a listed building, the method used had to be in historically appropriate.
In Jericho, Oxford’s answer to Katesgrove, you will find Walton Well drinking fountain. It is situated at the junction of Walton Well Road with Southmoor Road and Longworth Road and right opposite the site of the former Eagle Ironworks. There had been a well, a spring and a ford at this point until the 1880s, but that had been filled in. Former Oxford Mayor William Ward presented the fountain in 1885.
By Gillie Tunley and Brenda Sandilands.
Reading Between the Lines (RBL) are staging Hansel and Gretel at South Street Arts Centre in a joyous adaptation by Anna Wheatley during December. This enchanting production is deftly directed by Hal Chambers and set to a sassy soundscape by Benjamin Hudson, with exuberant movement by Rebecca Randall.