Worlds of Light
This project revived a play originally commissioned in 2006 called ‘Worlds of Light’ – a fictional account of the cholera epidemic in Barnard Castle in 1849, which explores the changing views and politics of the time that shaped new developments in the built environment of Barnard Castle. The play’s particular focus was the life and work of the Reverend George Dugard, who is commemorated in a memorial window in St Mary’s Parish Church. This project provided the opportunity to re-examine the play with an emphasis on how Dugard’s work changed the shape of the town. The project involved rehearsals and two final performances with a group of young people aged 13-15.
Dugard was responsible for building the vicarage in Parson’s Lonnen and supported the move to introduce running water and a sewerage system to Barnard Castle. The play follows the (fictionalised) story of the Pratt family (real-life characters, who are buried opposite the cholera memorial in St Mary’s graveyard) and explores some of poor living conditions of those working in the carpet mills at the time as well as the formation of the Board of Health – the precursor of today’s Town Council. The play was originally improvised and devised by young people. A completely new group worked on the revised version of the play which was performed in St Mary’s Parish Church in March 2013.
This project is now complete.