Freemasons save Christmas pando - Oh yes they do!

A community pantomime will still go ahead for children in socially disadvantaged areas thanks to a generous donation.

Friday, 18th December 2020, 9:00 am
Trustee Jeff Gibbs with Norman West from Northumberland Freemasons and Micky McGregor and Harriet Ghost in costume from Blowin’ a Hooley Theatre.

Northumberland Freemasons has given a grant of £3,000 to Blowing’ A Hooley Theatre, a non-profit company based in North Tyneside delivering theatre and arts projects to young people and audiences in communities that struggle to access the arts.

Set up in 2016, they have worked with some of the most deprived North East communities, including Meadowell, North Shields and Byker.

As part of their social impact work, they deliver Stop Loan Sharks projects and have created a ‘loan shark panto’ which raises awareness of the dangers of illegal lending through an engaging and entertaining pantomime for schools and families in vulnerable areas.

Partial funding from the Illegal Money Lending Team was given to provide a small number of performances of ‘Cinderella’s Dilemma’, a panto where Cinders needs help from local children to avoid being conned by a loan shark Fairy Godmother.

The Freemasons grant allows the theatre group to take additional COVID-safe performances to more Tyneside communities, allowing them to raise awareness of support for loan shark victims in vulnerable areas, whilst bringing much-needed festive cheer to those who will otherwise miss out this Christmas.

Norman West, representing Northumberland Freemasons, said: “We are pleased to help Blowin’ a Hooley deliver their important Christmas message which will help families deal with the problems associated with illegal money lenders.”

Harriet Ghost, from Blowin’ a Hooley, said: “We’re extremely grateful to Northumberland Freemasons and the Trustees for this generous offer of support. It will enable us to reach many more young people in the community.”