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  • Submit your questions for the allotment AGM
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  • Churchill Road housing: inquiry to be held tomorrow
    A public inquiry into West Oxford District Council’s refusal of planning permission for 60 homes at West End Farm on Churchill Road is to be held tomorrow. The inquiry will be held in Committee Room 1 at the council’s Woodgreen offices in Witney, starting at 9.30am. All interested parties can attend, and, at the Inspector’s […]
  • WODC rejects Kingham housing plans
    A proposal to build 16 new homes on land off Church Street in Kingham has been refused by West Oxfordshire District Council. As we previously reported, the proposal was controversial because it was believed that the land might be contaminated. However, WODC rejected the proposal both because of the strength of local opposition to the plans, […]
  • West Street surgery to become housing and shop?
    A planning application has been submitted to West Oxfordshire District Council to turn the West Street Surgery into four dwellings and a retail unit. The proposal, put forward by Gentian Projects (Oxfordshire), is to converted the surgery into three houses, one flat and a retail unit. The modern extensions to the property would be demolished. 10 […]
  • Meeting votes in favour of purchasing Chippy police station
    Members of the public who came to the recent meeting held to discuss the future of Chippy’s museum and police station building voted in favour of the police station being purchased for the town’s use – which could include a move for Chippy museum. At the start of the meeting at the Town Hall, held on 30 September, the […]
  • Hospital phone numbers change today
    The telephone numbers for Chippy hospital’s outpatients and intermediate care units have changed from today. Their new details are as below: Filed under: local services, news
  • Helpers wanted at cemetery clean-up day
    The town council is appealing for volunteers from the town to help clean up the cemetery next week. The clean-up is planned for Saturday 11 October, meeting at 10am. Refreshments will be provided.Filed under: news, places
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Chipping Norton Theatre
'Straight From The Boards' : Latest news direct from The Theatre, Chipping Norton
  • Job Opportunity- Chaperone
    We're looking for a second chaperone for our production on Mother Goose this Christmas. Below are the details, specific dates and rates tbc. The overall dates are: • Rehearsals: 29th Oct- 17th Nov 2014• Shows: 18th Nov- 11th Jan 2015• Just a few dates with in that• It will be three teams of four children 8-14 years, one team per day (two shows a day)• Performance schedule below• You will need to have an update DBS and Chaperone Licence Please contact or call 01608 649 105 as soon as possible, deadline 29/10/14
  • Telephone Campaign
    Forty Year Fund update; we’re launching a telephone campaign in November as part of our anniversary appeal and some of our supporters will shortly receive a letter with details about this. Follow up calls should only be made to people who have received this letter, which also tells you how to opt out if you’d rather not hear from us in this way. If you would like to know more about ways you can support your local theatre please go to the Support Us pages on the website or click here.
  • New Job Opportunity
      Creative Producer and Assistant Programmer – The Theatre Chipping Norton   An exciting job for an energetic candidate – this role is at the heart of the creative life of this restlessly busy theatre and arts centre. Working closely with the Artistic Director, the role takes on producing our three annual inhouse production runs, and supports the selection and administration of a busy touring programme. Candidates should have arts admin experience, be organised, flexible and ambitious, and good at bringing teams together.  This post is suitable for early-mid-career candidates.   Closing date: 31st October 2014   Salary: £15.5K - £17.5K, dependent on experience.   For information pack and to apply contact Faye on 01608 642349 or email  
  • Emma Boor Puppeteer - Oxford Mail Article Why life's so good for puppeteer Emma Boor Four years ago, Emma Boor landed here in Oxford with a bump. Both literally – she was heavily pregnant and would give birth to her son Mo a couple of months later – but it was also a bumpy landing in a different world. One moment she was up in Newcastle bouncing around in an orange jumpsuit (a children’s show she had dreamed up called Matilda’s Lunchbox), and the next she was here, having fallen in love with a composer (her now husband Martyn) after taking a punt at internet dating. “Motherhood and the move here were both big life changes and a mad shock” laughs Emma, 39. “You lose your sense of identity a bit when you have a child, don’t you, and I had my performing business which had taken off in the north east and I loved it to bits. “But amazing things have happened since I came to Oxford and I feel very lucky.” Amazing things have indeed happened. Thanks to her puppetry performing arts business – Wild Boor Ideas – Emma is kept very busy entertaining children and their parents around the county. She has won rave reviews for her family-friendly shows at Pegasus Theatre in Magdalen Road, East Oxford, including Play the World, Cinderella Green The Recycling Queen and Funky Monkey and the Juicy Fruits, which lands at Pegasus next Sunday, October 5. Emma, who once worked as a clown doctor on children’s cancer wards in the north east, was commissioned to write Funky Monkey by the primary care trust with funding from Arts Council England. “This one is all about gunky food – kids always love messy stuff – and the funkiest monkey in the jungle who loses his funk, maybe because of what he’s eating,” explains Emma. “Like all my shows, it’s about trying to bring a bit of joy to life – learning does not have to be boring! “Other theatre companies certainly deal with the deep and dark stuff, and that’s great if you want that. But I definitely feel there’s a place for joy, for magic and for finding the beauty in life. “Moments of joy are easy to miss if you’re up to your eyeballs in paying the mortgage, cooking and cleaning.” Unexpected levels of drudgery and chaos are something all mothers will be familiar with, as will the struggle to make ends meet in a world where toy adverts seem to be thrust at you and yours from all angles. It was the ordinary, random household objects around her that inspired Emma to craft some of her puppets – such as J-Cloth and Mopella – the ugly sisters who came to life for Cinderella Green. This eco-themed show was a hit, and also sparked an offer from Oxford University Press for Emma to write her own book, Bin Goblins, which has just been published this month and is for sale on Amazon. Always passionate about the environment – Emma’s first job when she moved back south was as Welcome to Wildlife officer for Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust – the Oxford Reading Tree book Bin Goblins shows families how to make characters by recycling everyday objects. “As with my shows and all I do, the book is about making the ordinary extraordinary,” says Emma, beside a giant Garlic Nan puppet, all bubbly, doughy smiles, she has crafted. “Sometimes, people will say to me: ‘oooh, I’m not the least bit creative’, to which I say: labelling anyone – or yourself – as uncreative is a load of pants! “Playing with young children is something people sometimes feel they don’t know how to do. The only ingredient you need is imagination and the rest is easy. If I can help with that at all, that makes me very happy.” Right now, amid the puppet factory that is the trio’s family home in Divinity Road, Emma is also busy fundraising for her next show – Traction Man – based on the book by local author Mini Grey. Emma has secured Arts Council Funding but is busy dealing with the paperchain that needs shuffling as well as dreaming up new shows, characters and ideas for a whole range of educational books now that her first has been published. Not a bad level of output for the girl who left school with one E and three D grades at GCSE – as well as the C in maths she earned after retaking the exam four times. Emma always wanted to work with children – originally she had wanted to become a teacher before academia put paid to the plan – and ended up studying interactive and broadcast media at Manchester Met University, not knowing where it would lead. “Ah yes, my experience at school has given me a different outlook on life and learning,” says Emma. “Sometimes, the way learning is structured at school is all about the product and not the process. Actually, life should be about the experience, that joy of play along the way. “In my shows, I try to be as reactive as I can and there is no right or wrong answer. Recently at Chippy, for example, during Under The Sea, I called out: what shall we fish for? ‘Carrots!’ was the reply. “Why not?! Why not fish for carrots! One minute, we’re making a shoe farm, the next it’s a bucket badger or a feather duster fairy. There are no limits to little imaginations, so why constrain it?” Chipping Norton Theatre has recruited Emma to offer a new season of activity sessions for the very young – from six months to five years. Here, her Stories Alive sensory shows take on a different theme every time, from magic woods to a tickling bear. “I often find that the more ridiculous I look, the less inhibited I can be and the more everyone else enjoys it,” adds Emma. “This is why you’ll tend to find me dressed up as a chicken or a fairy, or whatever. And I always make sure there are some quality tunes for the kids and the parents to enjoy – whether it’s The Worzels or some ’70s and ’80s classics. “Why not cram as much joy as you can in?” EMMA IN ACTION * Funky Monkey and the Juicy Fruits takes place on Sunday, October 5, 11am and 2pm, The Pegasus Theatre, Magdalen Road, Oxford, OX4 1RE. 01865 812150/ * Stories Alive, Tuesdays until  October 21, The Theatre, Chipping Norton 9.30am,  10.30am and 11.30am. 01608 642350 * Bin Goblins by Emma Boor, published by OUP, is for sale now on Amazon, £5.80    
  • 4 Stars from The Stage for Around the World in 80 Days
    The Stage: Around the World in 80 Days Published Monday 22 September 2014 at 10:42 by Andrew Blades The centre spread in the programme for this new take on the Jules Verne classic gives us a potted account of steampunk, that 21st-century take on the sometimes madcap technological progress of the Victorian age. Toby Hulse and John Terry have taken this aesthetic as their starting point, and created a pacey, inventive romp that bottles some of the kinetic energy of the 19th-century only to release it with a raised eyebrow and a giggle. Richard Hurst in Around the World in 80 Days Photo: Ric Mellis The first thing the audience may notice on stage is a giant suitcase. While it initially plays the part of the Bank of England safe, it soon transforms into the play’s repository of props. It’s a typically simple but clever idea, suggesting that with increased ability to travel comes increased ability to perform different roles or embody different personae, and this production never lets up on that promise. Richard Hurst’s Phileas Fogg is the model Victorian gent, complete with top hat, whiskers and a fondness for Sherlock Holmes-style rationale. His suavity is offset by the haphazard Passepartout (Anna Tolputt), who bounces and capers from mishap to mishap, and the bumbling Fix of the Yard, played with relish by Gareth Cassidy. All three actors also take on a panoply of minor roles, and while it is inevitable that some of these global bit-players lapse into stereotype, it is all done with good humour and intelligence. Younger audience members not acquainted with the story (or, indeed, with those 1980s Willy Fog cartoons) will also find the suspense and the initial false ending appealing. Something for everyone, then; though the characters may not yet have the ability to fly, this production certainly does. Verdict: Goofy Victorian caper for the heart and head
  • 5 Star reveiw for Around the World in 80 Days!
    ***** Around the World in 80 Days – The Theatre Chipping Norton Writer: Jules Verne Adaptor: Toby Hulse Director: John Terry Reviewer: Matt Dicks, Cotswold Homes and Public Reveiws Book the tickets, stoke the coals and sally forth for the theatre: Director John Terry’s vision of Jules Verne’s famous story is a kinetic, boisterous, joke-fuelled treat. Travellers of all ages should hop aboard for a frantic romp spanning an ever-shrinking globe. We’re in the Victorian age, and bright-toothed, deep-pocketed gentleman Phileas Fogg has wagered that he can make it across the world a mere 80 days, assisted only by new-fangled means of rail and steam. And there’s something about this small yet ambitious play that feels engine-like indeed: finely tuned, all parts working in perfect unison, the output a flying conveyor belt of laughs. A fine trio of actors (Gareth Cassidy, Richard Hurst, Anna Tolputt) wring every last chuckle from Toby Hulse’s script with impeccable timing. There’s not a second to spare as Terry’s carefully calibrated chaos has them barrelling about with relentless vigour. It’s obvious a whole lot of practice has gone into this convincingly spontaneous mayhem – stand up movement director Bronya Deutsch. The three must be shovelling thousands of calories onto the fire as they incessantly flicker between a variety of characters, assisted only by the odd fez, fake ‘tache or shawl – even an elephant is conjured into being with a washtub, a duct-pipe and some enthusiastic stomping. This is make-believe of the highest order. All three performers are tirelessly superb, but special praise should be awarded to Cassidy, who spends most of his time in the guise of the hapless Scotland Yard detective Fix, yet also has hilariously exaggerated turns as a Yankee steamboat captain and a sacrificial Indian princess. Well done, too, to set designer Alex Marker for the multi-compartmented suitcase from which this delightful production springs. Moonlighting as a bank vault, a consulate and Fogg’s own wardrobe, it’s a compact yet endlessly expansive solution to the challenge of putting eight countries on a modestly sized stage. Composer Eamonn O’Dwyer’s effective score both propels the story and helps glue together the collage of half-imaginary set pieces. The Theatre Chipping Norton tackles problems of scale with mischievous panache. A mountainous journey is evoked with nothing more than a toy train and an empty picture frame, and there’s a great visual gag involving a parade of cultists that shouldn’t be spoiled here. Chuckles aside, the play also achieves a subtler kind of magic, putting you in a bygone age when the ultra-efficient transport networks we now take for granted were only just beginning to girdle the globe. (It’s rather fitting that this show is a touring one). The thrills and romance of travel are revived as Terry’s hilarious version of Around The World in 80 Days taps into a timeless spirit of adventure. It’s a pleasure to watch.
  • Parking Restrictions & Traffic Diversions in Chipping Norton
    Please note that the fair has arrived in Chipping Norton and the centre of the town is currently closed with diversions until late Saturday night.  It would be advised that visitors allow extra time for their journey.  The long stay car park on New Street is open as usual.   Restrictions apply 18th Sept - 21st Sept.