Edward Alderton Theatre

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The Edward Alderton Theatre is an amateur theatre venue in Bexleyheath, behind the Brampton Road Adult Education Centre next to Crook Log Leisure Centre. It was publicly licensed, built and financed in its entirety by drama students during the mid 1970s. The Theatre first opened its doors to the public on the 17 May 1976 with a production of Oh What a Lovely War, directed by Derek Goulding, the drama tutor who was to become the theatre's first artistic director.

The company, however, dates back a goodly number of years. Formed in 1951, it was part of the new Adult Education Centre in Brampton Road, Bexleyheath that had come into being a year earlier. In 1956, the group adopted the title The Brampton Players and began to make its mark among the other local drama groups winning one competition with an Orwellian style play entitled Nothing Will Come of Nothing, improvised and written by the group. During this period they also produced a play Acts of Farce, written by a member of the company with music composed especially for the play.

In addition to these original productions, the group performed two or three plays per season, trying always to improve the standard of production and thereby attracting a number of talented players to its ranks. The group continued to flourish, but always working within the confines of a small stage and school hall environment.

In keeping with the group's early experimental nature, the theatre staged an original play written by one of the company, Brian Warner - Bossenden portrays the peasant uprising near the village of Dunkirk in Kent in the year 1838 which was suppressed by the militia from Canterbury. The Alderton was the first non-professional company to stage Neville's Island by Tim Firth. Channel 4 filmed the theatre's production of Jeffrey Bernard is Unwell by Keith Waterhouse, which they transmitted in 1996.

On the competitive front, we have received our share of awards over the years, including those for individual acting, best production and technical achievement. The theatre has, since its opening, gone from strength to strength and, given your continued support, will hopefully continue so to do.

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    Alternative Company Names

    • Edward Alderton