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by Mark Kimsey

Directed by Mark Kimsey
Music composed and directed by Duncan Sykes

October 8, 9 & 10, 2015

Mad Bess Estelle Dunham
Villagers Joy Allcock
Dorothy Bentote
Barbara Higgs
Diane Maltz
Alison Marshall
Iris Mutton
Ann Sykes
Ann Taggart
    and Company
Village Children Thomas McCarthy
Adam Rayment
Alex Rawles
Joseph Rawles
Dolcie Reader
Jackson Reader
Louie Reader
Sister Mary Sue Worker
Sister Theresa Emma Kimsey
Abbot Herluin Lionel Williams
Woodman Duncan Sykes
Mary Brill Jo Williams
Joan Skillett Marian Lalley
John Brill Rhodri Leach
Henry Skillett Ben Williamson
James Bray Mark Kimsey
Thomas Lavender Graeme Gibault
Charles Lamb Dave Bowers
Mr Churchill Malcolm Bentote
Chorister Gwenllian Leach
Executioner Tag
Stirling Roy Oldfield
Dagnall Valerie Clarke
Mrs Meadows Alison Wyatt
Dr Pattern Brian Beeston
Jury Foreman Barbara Williams
Lily May Dolcie Reader

Time: Spring 1837
Location: Ruislip
Act I
Scene 1 North Riding Wood
Scene 2 Mad Bess Cottage
Scene 3 North Riding Wood
Scene 4 Deep in the Woods
Act II
Scene 1 The Abbey
Scene 2 The Court
Scene 3 Mad Bess Cottage

Programme Notes        [ Photographs ]

A play based upon true events that occurred many years ago, deep within Ruislip Woods

The play is set in the spring of 1837 and tells the story of an innocent farm labourer called John Brill. One day whilst exploring the woodlands, John and his dear friend, Henry Skillett, came across three peasants as they were out poaching. Caught red-handed, the poachers had no choice but to adminster 'summary justice'. However, in doing so, they disturbed Mad Bess!

Who was Mad bess? A headless horsewoman, a lost soul, or a demented old woman who prowled the woods? Wait and see...

If you wish to investigate the story further, please take a stroll around the woodlands of Ruislip. For, if you look carefully, you will find John Brill's house in Breakspear Road and, if you dare enter the woods themselves, you may find Mad Bess cottage, standing ominously at the edge of the trees.

But, if you do enter the woods, be careful - you never know who might be there!