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Pit Prop Theatre Company Archive

Date range: 1979-1994.

The Pit Prop Theatre Company was founded in 1979, and throughout its 15-year life was based in Leigh near Wigan, Lancashire. It was a radical company which set out to challenge many of the assumptions and attitudes prevalent in society. For example, productions were inspired by the miners' strike of 1984-5, the anti-apartheid movement and racial prejudice. Almost all productions were commissioned by the Company. It was particularly active in the theatre-in-education movement pioneered by Peter Slade, touring schools and community theatres.

The Company was funded jointly by the North West Arts Council and Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council, but was forced to close in 1994 as a result of funding cuts.

The archive contains papers relating to productions, including scripts, research notes, programmes, publicity materials and photographs. There is also correspondence relating to funding, administration and the closure of the Company.

The collection will be of particular interest to drama students and theatre historians, but it also has wider significance for the history of popular culture, social studies and research into arts funding in the 1980s and early 1990s.

Finding aids

Unpublished box list.

Location

The John Rylands Library

Using the reading rooms in the John Rylands Library

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