Disadvantaged children discover magic of Royal & Derngate Christmas shows thanks to theatre’s appeal

Cinderella is the pantomime at Royal & Derngate Theatre this year
Cinderella is the pantomime at Royal & Derngate Theatre this year

More than 300 disadvantaged children have enjoyed the Christmas shows at Royal & Derngate thanks to a campaign by the Northampton theatre.

The appeal was supported by Northamptonshire Community Foundation and the Chronicle & Echo’s Fair Deal for Kids Fund.

Throughout November and December, customers have been invited to add a gift-aided donation of £10 when making a theatre booking. Royal & Derngate have made up the difference and provided free tickets to disadvantaged children living in Northamptonshire.

All the tickets were for children and young people who live in or are at risk of being in child poverty, with the aim of helping them to live more rewarding lives.

Northamptonshire Community Foundation grants director, Rachel McGrath, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have worked with Royal & Derngate on the Unforgettable Gift campaign. Over 300 theatre tickets have been gifted to local charities for children who may not be able to afford normally to attend the theatre and are at risk of living in child poverty. The festive period is a difficult and stressful time for families on a low income and this helps release some of the burden and pressures at this time of year, as well as creating a memorable and magical experience.”

Rutendo Nyatsine, chairlady of Zimwomen, one of the groups that benefited, said: “Thank you to everyone who has made it possible for the children in our group to have the wonderful experience of seeing one of the Christmas performances. Some of the children have never had an opportunity to go to the theatre and they have been so excited. It has been a magical Christmas present for them.”

Royal & Derngate Chief Executive, Martin Sutherland added: “We want to thank our audience members who have been so generous in response to this appeal and have made so many Northamptonshire children’s Christmases extra special. We are delighted to have shared our frozen tundras and fairytale lands with even more young people this year.”

Tickets for The Snow Queen and Cinderella have been made available for a number of key performances throughout December. To find out more about Royal & Derngate’s Christmas productions, call Box Office on 01604 624811 or visit www.royalandderngate.co.uk.