VIDEO: Reports of Belper beast as show prepares to go on stage

More than 5,000 people will have enjoyed Belper Arts Festival by the time its programme of events draws to a close, organisers are predicting.

The curtain comes up on the drama side of the festival this week with several performances due to draw crowds into No28 on the Market Place.

A fun and physical piece of outdoor theatre, suitable for all the family, will also be performed at Belper River Gardens on Bank Holiday Monday, May 27, at 4pm inspired by the local urban legend that there is a big, black, cat-like creature stalking Belper and the surrounding countryside.

Festival co-ordinator, George Gunby, said: “ Since the performance was announced two or three more people have come forward with sightings of the beast, which is heightening intererst around the performance.

“Highlights of the last week have been ‘cream tea with Jane Austen’, which was completely sold out, and the open mic poetry night at Fresh Ground was a good event as well as musician Pete Castle and music at St Peter’s Church Hot House Jazz Night and a pop-up choir at St Peter’s. The organisers have been thrilled to bits.

“This Friday night is Educating Rita and dress reahearsals look really good.On Saturday night there is the winner of Belper Short Plays night and the author will be there to receive her prize. We’ve got quite a few advance bookings, but tickets are still available.

“Belper actress Rebecca Holmes is making an appearance as the receptionist from hell in Lileth on Saturday and Ellie Ward, who took the place by storm with her monologues last year is appearing in Educating Rita. And Fresh Ground has added an evening of music, monologues and poetry on May 29.”

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