World War One play to tell Home Front stories at Welwyn church

PUBLISHED: 19:09 02 October 2016 | UPDATED: 19:38 02 October 2016

Darren Machin, Toni Brooks, Catherine Forrester and Ken Boyte will perform in Seeing it Through at St Mary’s Church Welwyn on Wednesday, October 12

Darren Machin, Toni Brooks, Catherine Forrester and Ken Boyte will perform in Seeing it Through at St Mary's Church Welwyn on Wednesday, October 12


The story of the Home Front in East Hertfordshire during World War One is coming to a Welwyn church.

Seeing it Through – On tour 2016

• Ware: Saturday, October 8 – Place House Hall (matinee and evening)

• Welwyn: Wednesday, October 12 – St Mary’s Church

• Buntingford: Thursday, October 13 – St Peter’s Church

• Sawbridgeworth: Friday, October 14 – Bullfields Community Centre

• Thundridge: Saturday, October 15 – Thundridge Village Hall

• Hertford: Thursday, October 20 – Hertford Theatre Studio

• Hertford: Friday, October 21 – St Andrew’s Church

• Braughing: Saturday, October 22 – St Mary’s Church

• Hertford: Friday, November 11 – Richard Hale School

What should you do in a Zeppelin raid? Were the Germans really plotting to blow up Digswell Viaduct?

Why did women battle to be in the Land Army?

Find out in a new play coming to Welwyn which tells the little-known stories of the Home Front in 1914-18, from the words of the extraordinary men, women and children who saw it through.

Seeing It Through has been created by professional community theatre company Pins & Feathers Productions, in association with Hertford Theatre.

Following the stories of real people, it portrays a time of unprecedented upheaval, loss, change and opportunity in the towns and villages of Hertfordshire.

In the production, directed by Knebworth’s Richard Syms, five actors take on a wide range of characters – from suffragists to soldiers, politicians to brewery workers.

Musicians on stage perform songs from the period, adding to the atmosphere.

Kate Miller is one of the researchers and writers of Seeing It Through, alongside Emma Blowers and Erin Thompson.

She told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: “This is a unique homegrown show, bringing to life aspects of local history which are really not much known about.

“We are also aiming to bring professional drama out to communities, so are performing in non-theatre places like St Mary’s Church in Welwyn.”

The play’s tour opens with matinee and evening performances at Place House Hall in Ware on Saturday, October 8.

It arrives at St Mary’s Church on Wednesday, October 12.

An entertaining and fast-paced show, Seeing It Through is suitable for all, including children aged eight upwards.

The company’s first production was The Last Witch, the story of Jane Wenham of Walkern, who at her Hertford trial in 1712 became the last person in England to be convicted of witchcraft.

The play was performed with a large cast of professional and non-professionals, at Hertford Theatre and in Walkern, directed by Richard Syms and written by Kate Miller.

In 2015 the company produced First Light, a contemporary passion play, at St Andrews Church in Hertford.

This was a fresh and modern take on the Easter story, exploring issues affecting people’s lives today.

Directed by Trevor Michael Georges, and written by Kate Miller, the play had a large inclusive cast and played to packed houses.

Seeing It Through’s director is Richard Syms, from Knebworth, who has a distinguished career as a stage and film actor, and has directed around 100 shows for rep theatres, fringe venues and leading London drama schools.

His recent screen appearances include BBC’s The Musketeers and the film Far from the Madding Crowd, and he was notable as the Speaker of the House of Commons in the film The Iron Lady.

Richard is also a vicar and is associate priest at the Actor’s Church in Covent Garden.

Kate Miller is a playwright, editor and creative writing teacher, based in Hertford, where she is an active member of Hertford Writers’ Circle.

Her plays have been performed in London and Cambridge, and she had a short radio play broadcast on BBC radio.

She finds much inspiration for her writing from history and the lessons it has for us today.

• For more about the show, visit

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