Year-long community project detailing Worle’s past to be broadcast online

PUBLISHED: 07:00 31 May 2020

Bob Walton at Speakeasy poetry event at Big Wole hub. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-King

Bob Walton at Speakeasy poetry event at Big Wole hub. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-King


A year-long collaborative venture will be published next week.

Dizzy O Dare giant balloon show outside Big Worle. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-KingDizzy O Dare giant balloon show outside Big Worle. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-King

Becoming Stories, a project from Big Worle and Theatre Orchard, will be broadcast on June 6.

The project showcases a vibrant array of drama, dance and song.

The Big Whirl Community Arts Festival, planned to mark the culmination of the campaign, had been due to take place at Beckett Primary School on June 6. Instead, digital content has been created in partnership with community groups to give a flavour of the original programme of activity.

Throughout the past year, the Becoming Stories campaign focused on gathering past and present tales from people and places.

Author Patrick Gale at Big Worle. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-KingAuthor Patrick Gale at Big Worle. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-King

Theatre Orchard also put on professional live arts shows in informal settings as North Somerset comedy duo Living Spit took their Living Quiz show to a packed out audience at the Parish Pump public house.

Delivered by a range of professional arts practitioners, the creative programme of activities included drama, writing, poetry, dance, film, circus, music and song.

The programme engaged community members from schools and youth groups to mums and babies sessions and the elderly in local care homes.

Angela Athay-Hunt, engagement manager at Theatre Orchard said: “Despite not being able to present a live Festival for Big Worle, we want to mark the great partnerships built over the past year through creative engagement with the community.

Author Patrick Gale at a Big WOrle workshop. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-KingAuthor Patrick Gale at a Big WOrle workshop. Picture: Marie-Dominique Demers-King

“With our series of short films we have aimed to capture the essence of the ‘Becoming Stories’ project, by shining a light on Big Worle’s fantastic communal spirit, showcasing local talent and providing a glimpse of the many historical and contemporary stories that make Big Worle such a distinctive place to be.”

While in lockdown, members of Theatre Orchard’s adult drama group, Theatre Lounge, have created self-filmed, diary entries of historical characters, from a Celtic storytelling sage to a World War Two farmer, using research from Worle History Society.

People have also been approached to create a talking heads style film sharing their favourite places in the community, which include self-filmed snapshots from history society member, Paul Davis, a multi-generational film of Worle through the eyes of residents, the Brooks family and Becky Condron’s recollections of her teenage years in Worle in the 1980s.

The videos, produced by filmmaker Nick Sutton, will be screened on June 6, creating a journey through the ages and highlighting the fascinating history and heritage of the area.

Singer and musician Casey Lloyd and dancer, choreographer and beatboxer, Deepraj Singh have worked together with the community to create One Big Worle Song And Dance, which will be released as a combined dance film and soundtrack.

With the support of members of the Terrestrial community choir and the Worle-based Carlea Theatre Arts Dance, a choreographed movement piece has been devised that will be set to a specially composed musical score.

Through online sessions, Deepraj has worked in partnership with contemporary dance students aged nine to 14, at Carlea Theatre Arts and woven together their expressions of Worle through dance into one choreographed piece.

Deepraj said: “Working with Theatre Orchard and Carlea Theatre Arts has really connected me with the community and I am excited to share what we have created together with Worle and the wider world in June”

Organisers plan to present a live performance of One Big Worle Song And Dance outside the Big Worle hub at a future point, with a party once social distancing measures allow it.

Leanne Clarke, director at Carlea Theatre Arts, said: “It has been absolutely lovely for our students to take part in this and we are so proud with how they have engaged with the whole process.

“This has been such a lovely opportunity from Theatre Orchard and we can’t wait to see the finished film. Well done to all our students.”

Casey Lloyd added: “It’s been inspiring and joyous to see so many people within the community come together and engage with such an important project, showing their pride in the heritage and future of this special village.”

To watch Becoming Stories, log on to

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