Top TV, film and stage actor Stephen Tompkinson is giving his backing to this summer’s open air play season at Lytham Hall.

Stephen who was brought up in Lytham has taken the time to send his good wishes to the casts and organisers of the four-play season through his London agent Deborah Charlton, in response to a request from Lytham Hall theatre organiser Julian Wilde.

“It is with great pleasure that I send my best wishes to everyone involved with the open air theatre season at Lytham Hall. The programme of four outdoor plays at Lytham Hall is an excellent initiative and I wish you all, actors and audiences alike, every success,” he writes.

Stephen 50, has achieved continuing success with TV series Ballykissangel, Drop the Dead Donkey, Wild at Heart and DCI Banks, as well as with acclaimed and diverse stage roles in The Revenger’s Tragedy, Charley’s Aunt and Spamalot. His stage beginnings were in Lytham.

“My own interest in acting was fostered during my school days at St. Bede’s School in Lytham St. Annes where I spent the majority of a very happy upbringing. During my professional career I have welcomed the opportunity to mix live stage roles with film and television work such as Ballykissangel and DCI Banks.”

Chapterhouse Theatre Company’s production Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights opens the Lytham Hall season on Sunday 12 June, followed by Illyria’s Midsummer Night’s Dream on Friday July 1.

Richard Main and Oliver Gray, the artistic directors of Chapterhouse and of Illyria respectively, have been cheered by the encouraging words of Stephen Tompkinson for their work, as their casts go in to their final rehearsals for their summer tours.

“Performing any live play is a challenge, especially in the open air, but I am sure that this summer the casts of the Chapterhouse Theatre Company and of Illyria will be welcoming the challenge of taking their plays throughout the length and breadth of the country. I hope that their summer tours will go well in warm and sunny weather.”

Julian Wilde feels that it is a very warm-hearted reply from an actor with strong local roots who is enjoying a distinguished stage, television and film career.

“It’s very heartening, prior to our first play of the season, to have the interest and support of Stephen Tompkinson. He has been very busy filming in Leeds for the fifth series of DCI Banks, but his response was immediate and warm-hearted. His personal endorsement will help us to make a memorable start to our summer programme.”

Tickets at £13, with concessions at £10/£6.50, are on sale now on line from www.chapterhouse.org and www.illyria.uk.com and locally from Lytham Hall phone 01253 736652: Plackitt and Booth, Booksellers, Lytham 796958: Lowther Pavilion 794221: Stringers Homelife, 740700: Bennetts Bakers, Ansdell 736318: Storytellers Inc., St. Annes 781690


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ADDRESS: Lytham Hall, Ballam Road, Lytham, FY8 4JX

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