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Acting students visit plague village

Barnsley College Performing Arts students prepared for their forthcoming performance of The Roses of Eyam by visiting the Derbyshire village to learn about its astonishing history.

Visiting Eyam gave the students the opportunity to learn more about its story, connect to their characters on an emotional level and explore the parallels with our own modern-day experiences of Covid-19. They visited the Eyam Plague Museum, the church containing official village records, and the Cucklet Delph Open Amphitheatre.

The students are bringing two showings of The Roses of Eyam to The Civic theatre in Barnsley on Wednesday 11 May, at 2.00pm and 7.30pm.

The Roses of Eyam is the remarkable and true story of the Eyam residents who sacrificed their lives by remaining within the village to contain the spread of Bubonic Plague in 1665 and 1666. The play highlights the human tragedies and even comedies which took place as well as the courage of the villagers to carry out their act of self-sacrifice.

Peter Lawton, Director of the upcoming production and Performing Arts Tutor at Barnsley College, said: “I first directed this play 15 years ago when the actors could only imagine what it would be like to live through a worldwide pandemic like the Bubonic Plague. Directing it now as we gradually come out of the Covid-19 pandemic, has been a fascinating process because myself and the student actors are able to relate to certain aspects of Eyam’s remarkable and brave story. Our audiences will be able to connect to many of the scenes in this moving true account.”

Tickets are priced at £11.50 (adults) and £9.50 (concessions and students). They are available at:

For more information about Performing Arts courses at Barnsley College, visit

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