St Lawrence Players is a group of people from
the Eastcote, Middlesex area, who produce three
productions a year just for the fun of it! We are based at St Lawrence Church. Since
our first production in 1948, The Players have produced over 200 productions - repeating a
couple of favourite plays and musicals!
In 1948, in the days of Father Godwin, Miss Angell organised a dramatic group for young people.
With the success of this junior group, a senior group was formed and soon the two merged
to form what has become today's Players. In these early days, subscription to
The Players was 3d, there were four productions a year, including entertainment after the Summer Fete,
and scenery was made from kitchen linoleum! Recently some earlier details have come to light.
Founder members of The Players remember Fr. Godwin helping them in any way he could.
Not only did rehearsals sometimes last until four in the morning but also stagehands, on
one occasion, borrowed the carpet from Fr. Godwin's bedroom while he was sick in bed!
Father Hitchinson came to St Lawrence
in 1956 and with him came stricter rules. Membership to The Players was open only to
communicants. In one performance when a stage bird failed to appear, the actor was heard
to mutter "where's the bloody robin?" As they left, Father Hitchinson apologised
to every member of the audience. Had this occurred at the October '78 production of A
Voyage Round My Father he would only have had to apologise to twelve people!
At the beginning of 1959, St. Laurence became St. Lawrence !
A few years ago, The Players almost took their last curtain call. Legislation and public
safety rules nearly caused the end of the group. Having made considerable changes to the
scenery, back stage area, hall and working procedures, The Players will continue to
delight audiences and add to its ever-growing anthology of past
The Players two year interegnum without hall lights hopefully will come to an end for the October
2017 production. Sound facilities are still very primitie but it will be some time befiore
that is tackled.
2017 marked the fiftieth year in which Dorothy and Malcolm Bentote have been members of Players.
In the programme for the May 2017 pproduction, they wrote an interesting, brief rememberance of
those years. You can read it in "Fifty years on ..."