Memories Shared

Whether you were once a member of the cast or audience, or purely have an interest to know more about this unique place, please feel free to create topics, ask questions or share memories within the Forum.

Maybe looking though the forum has brought back so many memories you feel the urge to share them in more than just a few lines.  Well, you could either just find a dark room to sit in and let them pass, or you could produce a longer contribution as a separate page.  We welcome those longer contributions too in the next tab (belowMemory pages where there’s a huge amount of information on all aspects of the theatre from its foundation right through to its end. Memories specific to individual shows can be found within each show’s entry under Productions.


To some members, a few lines in a forum does not suffice the amount of time they were personally involved with the Grange and other members.  As often happens, one memory leads to another, and before too long the equivalent of a few A4 pages has passed and most likely extends far beyond one evening’s thoughts.  This is where we welcome those longer contributions and hope that to the casual onlooker, cast or audience member, they too may have their own memories to share here, or in the forum.

Our thanks, then, go to the following for their thoughts preserved . . .

Martin Jacques:–  When I was asked to appear in Val’s production of Noël Coward’s Hay Fever at the end of 1989, it came as a complete surprise because I’d been out of the picture (so to speak) since 1981 when I appeared at the Grange in Val’s adaptation of “Camelot”.  Read more

From Vic Ince:-  The big scene for me was the ‘seduction,’ where I was supposed to be slouched on the back of the settee with my son’s girlfriend lying full length on it.  Then I was to roll off on top of her and then the kissing and cuddling commenced.  Read more…..

From Keith Bennett:-  As I begin compiling what I fondly thought would be a perhaps brief overview of the Grange Theatre’s technical side of things, it quickly became apparent there were a vast number of memories just waiting to be aired.  Read more…

From Adam Hurst:– “Butterflies Are Free”. This must rate as one of my all time five favourite plays to have appeared in. To play a blind, american folk singer (and I think largely pull it off) was a fantastic experience. I found myself “seeing” things in a different light. Read more

‘Amdrams’ before the GrangeRead more

Some early social gatherings at the GrangeRead more

First, build your theatre –  Read more

“The Boys in the Box”Read more

Rehearsals, rehearsals, rehearsalsRead more

Booking the Shows – the not-so-complex activities of the booking office! Read more

Show programmes’ history – their development over the years – Read more

Temporary theatre closure in 1998-9Read more

Dismantling the theatre – the saddest of times after the final show – Read more

The old gardens of the Grange – they’ve gone now but you can still visit them here – Read more

Ladies and gentlemen, there’ll now be a twenty-minute interval” – Read more

Some new archival photographs donated!Read more

A personal essay –Here, Keith Bennett draws a comparison between the resurgence of intimate theatre towards the end of the nineteenth century and the establishment of The Grange Theatre by Fred and Val Temlett. Possibly unknowingly, but in both cases meeting a need for their respective times. Read more

The Entire Company! Grange Theatre stalwart Andrew Jenner has devoted a considerable amount of his time to produce the listing below of our own Entire Company, which contains (to date) the name of every single person who was ever involved in supporting the productions at the Grange, either on- or off-stage. Read more


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Welcome Forums Memories and Discussions

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Past Colleagues Remembered

Archivists perhaps naturally have a tendency to live in the past, and to regard those years as still current especially when surrounded by the ephemera which forms the very archive upon which they’re working. And so it always comes as a bit of a surprise when the death is announced of – in our case – a member of the Grange Theatre whether they were on- or off-stage because of course their activities constitute part of the archive and perhaps assume an importance in the archivist’s mind which is now past its sell-by date.

The curtain finally fell in 2009, making it twelve years since any theatrical activity took place: but perhaps more importantly, our first show was in 1972 which means that over the passage of nearly fifty years there has been a natural wastage of our old friends. And that makes it all the more surprising that we haven’t received more news of their passing than we have. Perhaps it’s as well – Andrew’s magisterial list naming pretty much everyone involved in the good ship Grange Theatre from its inception to its closure stands as the main memorial to all our industry. But obviously if we do receive sad news we ought to devote a page on the website in which to commemmorate their connection with us.

So, to all our past colleagues – whether those still standing happily in the glare of the lights, or those who’ve slipped quietly into the shadows behind the scenery – we give our deepest respects for all their contributions which have made this website such a very fascinating place to explore.

KB 2021

Our thanks, then, go to the following, with condolences to their respective families. . .

Fred Cross

Peter Wroe

Louise Davies

Press & Media

As the archive gives up its secrets – especially newspaper cuttings – we’re putting them here in no particular order at present. Apologies for the sometimes poor quality of the images, due to us having to photograph newspaper pages too large for domestic scanners. Perhaps in time . . .

Press cuttings, general

A press article from 1980

An article from Annabel, July 1981

An article from Limited Edition, 1990

Relating to the Theatre’s  closure:
Oxford Mail
Banbury Cake

This is the hard copy article to which the above Banbury Cake link points.

BBC Radio 4 listing for With Great Pleasure’, a BBC recording from 1979 with Pam Ayres and Martin Jarvis.

Fred and Val helped found the Oxford Vegetarian Society and the following link visits that organisation’s archive page. We hope to add the photo in question very soon…

Oxford Vegetarian Society photo