Pantomime returns

ALDERNEY Theatre Group had to magic up something special for this year’s panto, following a disappointing hiatus in 2011.

ALDERNEY Theatre Group had to magic up something special for this year’s panto, following a disappointing hiatus in 2011.

And it seems they have – although the rabbit is being plucked from a hole rather than a hat.

On Wednesday 12 and Thursday 13 December, Alice in Blunderland will take over the Island Hall with a 20-strong cast and crew. And for the first time it will also feature a panto choir.

Each year’s production is specially written by Alderney Week stalwart Lee Flewitt.

Describing his take on the Lewis Carroll classic Alice in Wonderland, Mr Flewitt said:  ‘Carroll’s Alice was an 11-year-old girl who chased a rabbit down a hole into a wonderland of fantastical creatures – pompous rulers and dithering hares, Mad Hatters and screaming queens. My heroine can’t remember her 11th birthday as she was terribly sloshed at the time, but, as Blunderland is a fictional version of Alderney, everything else is the same.’

He added: ‘I hope that the audience will appreciate our little production. As usual, no expense has been spent to ensure that audiences enjoy a theatrical experience to treasure forever.’

The group has arranged a special theatre group package with Aurigny and hotels to tempt Guernsey-based panto fans to the island.

Prices begin at £101 per person for panto tickets, bed and breakfast or evening meal and return flights (prices based on two sharing a double or twin room).

Alderney Theatre Group chairwoman Illona Soane-Sands said: ‘Guernsey always misses out on our fabulous pantomimes – but this time, thanks to a special deal we’ve pulled off with Aurigny, the Braye Beach, Belle Vue and Harbour Lights Hotel – and just £6 for the panto – they can afford to.’

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Another seasonal Alderney attraction comes in the tall, twinkly shape of the island lighthouse.

The centenary of the island’s iconic edifice falls on 12 December and Alderney Society Museum has produced a special display to mark the occasion.

The exhibition will feature photographs of the lighthouse from the archives, the story of its evacuation and information about its keepers and construction.

Alderney Lighthouse was completed on 12 December 1912 by William John Baron. It was manned until 1997, when it became fully automated.

Museum curator Lucy Smith said: ‘The lighthouse is one of Alderney’s most famous landmarks so it seemed fitting to mark its centenary with a special exhibition. I hope lots of people will come to visit and learn something new about the lighthouse and its history.’

  • For more details about the overnight panto offer, email info@alderneytheatregroup.com or call 823448.
  • The Alderney Society Museum will open especially for the exhibition, which starts on 24 November and runs until Saturday 8 December. Doors will be open between 10am and noon.