How a Batley family have brought ‘The Twilight Garden’ play to stage

When a Batley grandfather was inspired to write some stories for his young grandson, he never imagined that one day one of those tales would be performed on stage.

By Jessica Barton
Thursday, 16th June 2022, 2:00 pm
Young Actors  from the West Yorkshire Drama Academy (WYDA) rehearsing "The Twilight Garden".
Young Actors from the West Yorkshire Drama Academy (WYDA) rehearsing "The Twilight Garden".

“The Twilight Garden” by Alan Greenwood, adapted for the stage by his daughter Judith Greenwood, will be performed for one night only on Friday, June 17, at the Parochial Hall on Melton Street in Batley.

The play will be performed by the Young Actors group from West Yorkshire Drama Academy (WYDA), which rehearses in Heckmondwike, with cast members’ ages ranging from seven to 13 years old.

Over the past two years, the young actors have battled through against Covid-19, lockdown and growing older, with some parts having to be recast as the original cast members grew up and graduated into the adult group at WYDA.

Sign up to our daily Dewsbury Reporter Today newsletter

WYDA director, Rebecca Foster, said: “We've made the play short and we’re performing it in the early evening so that families can bring their little ones and still be home for bedtime.”

The story is full of adventure, peril, comradeship and magic, and was written when Alan’s grandson was five years old.

That grandson is now 36 with a young daughter of his own, who is continuing the family tradition by writing a play for WYDA’s Young Actors, with a title which will be familiar to all parents - “Tidy Your Rooooom!!!”

Sadly Alan passed away in July 2021. However, his family would like to see people enjoying his show and perhaps even beginning to write plays themselves.

Alan’s daughter, Judith, said: “To write a play, you just need a pencil, some paper and a story imagined with your friends. Give it a try!”

Tickets are £5 including a programme, with children under 12 free.

Tickets can be purchased on the door or pre-booked by contacting 07845 579951.

The show will start at 6.30pm and end at 7.15pm at the Parochial Hall, Melton Street, Batley, WF17 8PT.