Comic aims to rewrite South Tyneside’s history

Eric MacLennan is ready to rewrite history
Eric MacLennan is ready to rewrite history

The ‘unofficial history’ of South Tyneside will be revealed at a lecture to be given by an artist and performer.

Eric MacLennan known for his critically-acclaimed town twinning project two years ago is back in the borough as part of a ‘Bite Sized’ theatre programme commissioned by the Cultural Spring at a range of community venues.

Eric’s performance - The Annual (Inaugural) Walter Plinge Memorial Lecture - is the last in the programme, and will provide an alternative take on South Tyneside’s past and its characters.

It will be performed at The Customs House, on April 16 at 12.30pm; Chuter Ede Community Association, on April 17 at 6.30pm; Hebburn Central Library, on April 18 at 7pm; Monkton Park Methodist Church, on April 19 at 6.30pm and Age Concern South Tyneside, on April 20 at 12.30pm.

He said: “The lecture will be a warm and humorous look at the borough. I’ve spent some time in South Tyneside researching stories and talking to people about tales and anecdotes. I hope the lecture will change the way people see the world, and will challenge them to think about what’s really important to them,”

“It’s something a bit different. Most of the true stories in this lecture are unbelievable – the made-up ones are more plausible. It will be interesting to see if people can tell the difference.”

The lecture will last no longer than 55 minutes and the audience will then be invited to share a buffet afterwards.

Emma Horsman, project director at the Cultural Spring, said: “The four theatre pieces have been completely different and some of our venues have been in places not normally associated with arts and culture – pubs, churches and sports clubs.

“We wanted to make the shows easily accessible and deliver them on people’s doorsteps and we’ve been pleased to see such varied audiences attending.”

Tickets for Eric’s show, costing £5, which include the cost of the buffet, are available from the Cultural Spring’s

website, www.theculturalspring.org.uk/event/bitesize

The Cultural Spring is an Arts Council England funded project, aims to increase participation in the arts in South Tyneside and Sunderland.