PREVIEW: A fairy tale ending for the environment as panto cuts plastic

Posted on September 10th 2018 by Whats on Northeast

Snow White is going green as a theatre looks to cut plastic waste from its festive pantomime.

Each year the show-stopping finale of the family favourite culminates in a shower of confetti at the Gala Theatre in Durham.

However, instead of using plastic confetti, the theatre has switched to a more eco-friendly paper alternative, and is doing its bit to help Durham County Council reduce the amount of single use plastics it uses.

Gala manager Robin Byers said: “As a venue we want to do what we can to ensure that our impact on the environment is as minimal as possible.

“Our pantomime will be every bit as magical for families this year but this simple change means we can take a big step towards a fairy tale ending of reducing the amount of plastic we throw away.”

The move from plastic to paper comes at a time when the council is working with other organisations, including the Environment Agency, Durham BID and Durham University, to reduce the amount of plastic waste produced across the county.

Already hundreds of council staff have switched to reusable coffee cups, helping to cut the amount of rubbish generated by the tens of thousands of takeaway hot drinks sold in the authority’s canteens and shops.

Head of direct services, Oliver Sherratt, who chairs the Single Use Plastics Task Group, said: “Already, since introducing the cups, we have seen hundreds of people make the switch and we will be encouraging more people to make this simple change, to help us reduce the amount of waste we produce.

“It is also great to see that all of our services are looking for ways to lessen their environmental impact, and the Gala’s fantastic panto effort will help prevent hundreds of kilograms of plastic from going to landfill.”

Following the success of last year’s show Robinson Crusoe, which was seen by more than 31,000 people, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves begins its 73 show run on 22 November.

Tickets are on sale now, with families invited to join panto favourites Neil Armstrong and Paul Hartley on a journey to the magical village of Fairyhill, where Rupert Von Rottenchops and his henchman Corporal Crosby plan to cause chaos and take all of the residents’ money.

Will Snow White, Chester the Jester and their mam Dame Dolly Doodle be able to stop the plan with the help of their seven little friends?

Find out by booking tickets online at or calling the box office on 03000 266 600.

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