THEY’VE put on more than one hundred plays since 1949.
And Dalton St Paul’s Amateur Dramatic Society is still going strong under the guidance of founding members Dennis and Jean Beaumont from Dalton.
The society, based at St Paul’s Methodist Church, Wakefield Road, will perform Dick Whittington at the church hall from March 26 to 28 (the curtain rises at 7.30pm).
The pantomime is the first to be performed in the society’s 60th anniversary year.
The society was founded in 1949 by church members, including Mr and Mrs Beaumont, who had put on previous plays to raise cash for the church.
The group gave their first production, The Ghost Train, in March 1950.
Since then it has performed plays, comedies, farces, musicals and pantomimes including Strike Happy in 1979 – a comedy about strikes blighting the country at the time.
In 1983 the club was given temporary shelter at Moldgreen United Reform Church following an arson attack, until the society moved back to its rebuilt rehearsal space in 1986.
The society currently has more than 40 members from infant school age children to pensioners.
Dennis, 82, a former design engineer at David Brown’s Crosland Moor, was elected treasurer at the first meeting in 1949 and has remained so ever since.
His last stage role was eight years ago but he still runs the front-of-house.
His wife Jean, 81, a former secretary, has been secretary for 13 years.
Their children Robin and Carina also performed with the society.
Mr Beaumont, a grandad-of-four, said: “I think it’s because nobody else wants the job! As long as you’re happy doing it you do it.
“I still enjoy it after all these years. I won’t go back on stage but I still enjoy singing.
“There’s been that many highlights I can’t point to a specific one. We’ve had some good times.
“As long as my health permits and someone else doesn’t want to take over I’ll carry on. I find it keeps you young.
“I always want to be involved in some way because I owe the society so much.”
Tickets to Dick Whittington cost £4 adults, £3 children, £10 families. Call 01484 532051.