09.12.06 Chiddingfoldnews


The Chiddingfold Tiptearers Play

Tipners outside Winterton ArmsTo be performed on Wednesday 27th December 2006 throughout the village We had such a good time last Christmas,
(and Iím sure that the large number of people at the various public houses that witnessed our first performances did likewise); ,
that there is to be an even better rendition of the Chiddingfold Tiptearers play this year!
If, for some reason you still donít know what this play is, (our progress has been logged in every local publication that will suffer us), let me try to explain.
Tiptearing can be regarded as mumming, (any wiser?). Itís street theatre performed around Christmas, traditionally by local workers who were looking for a few extra Ďbobí to keep body and soul together during winter.
Origins are probably pagan, involving death and resurrection around the winter solstice, but as few scripts or accounts have been kept, it is all supposition. In this era we are merely out for a good time and to entertain the village in a traditional fashion. We have resurrected this event from an old script discovered in an archive, and entitled the Chiddingfold Tiptearers Play; itís previous performances being around 1860.
The players, mainly locals, (although you shouldnít recognise them in their costumes and blackened faces), will take the parts of King George, a Turkish Knight, Beelzebub, the Doctor, and of course Old Father Christmas, plus the Bold Captain, Little Billy Wittle and of course Slasher, the gallant soldier! The story is irrelevant of course, and quite obscure, but needless to say, King George wins the day against the infidel! (Who is killed, but brought back to life by the marvellous Doctor!)
Each performance lasts about 20 minutes, and subject to weather conditions may be performed outside the various pubs, or squeezed inside if inclement!
Do come and see, crowd participation is encouraged! Carols and other singing, with minstrels music, will conclude each performance and accompany the players as they process from pub to pub!
We didnít intend to, but a collection was taken last year, and £200 was given to swell the Bonfire Charity fund, (for Chiddingfold Senior Citizens at Xmas).
We will perform at The Swan P.H. at 12.30pm, at The Crown at 1.00pm and finally at The Winterton Arms at 2.0pm, (times are of course approximate and may become inaccurate as the day progresses and the players are required to quench their thirsts!) We may also be at Chiddingfold Ex-Servicemens Club but this is yet to be confirmed.
What better way to spend a holiday afternoon in Chiddingfold?


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