Curtain up on a £2,500 donation

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Comedy and tragedy have combined to provide a welcome boost to the development appeal at Lytham Hall.

Open-air theatre organiser Julian Wilde has handed over a cheque for £2,500 to Lytham Hall’s senior administrator Julie Brayne, after a record 2011 summer season.

A total of 1,350 people attended the four contrasting performances by the Gloucester-based Rain or Shine Theatre Company and Fylde coast favourites Illyria in the grounds of the Georgian listed stately home, from June to August last year.

“We received tremendous local backing from everyone – the people of Lytham and St Annes and the entire Fylde coast, the professional staff at Lytham Hall, the seven ticket outlets, our five business patrons, as well as all the volunteer helpers from the Friends,” said Julian.

“It’s excellent to be able to provide such a pleasing sum – a 25 per cent increase – to the Hall Appeal as the result of a wonderful mix of comedy, tragedy, and music.”

Julie Brayne is looking forward to the 2012 summer season.

“In 2012, Lytham really will be the place for outdoor spectaculars”, she said. “There’s the expanded St George’s Festival, the Open Golf and the World War Two weekend, not to mention three nights of Lytham Proms.

“I think the four plays we are staging at Lytham Hall this coming summer will complement these first-class events extremely well.

“I am expecting a further increase in attendances here.”

The first of this summer’s plays is Jane Austen’s Emma, staged by the Chapterhouse Theatre Company, who will be making their Lytham Hall debut on Friday, June 15.

Tickets are expected to be on sale from April 16.