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Cotswold theatre’s wardrobe department makes NHS medical scrubs

Written by: Andrew Merrell | Posted 14 April 2020 12:28

Cotswold theatre’s wardrobe department makes NHS medical scrubs

Rather than create a drama out of the current coronavirus crisis the wardrobe department at Cirencester’s The Barn Theatre has been doing its bit for the NHS and health staff by producing scrubs. 

Wardrobe supervisor Denise Cleal saw a plea in the Facebook group Cheltenham and Cirencester Scrubbers – For The Love Of Scrubs NHS, highlighting the lack of scrubs in surgeries and hospitals. 

Together with fellow wardrobe assistant Bridget Griffiths the pair decided while the theatre was temporarily closed they would turn their hands to making scrubs for those on Gloucestershire’s front line. 

Ms Cleal said: “I’m the wardrobe supervisor at the Barn Theatre, and as my work there has ceased for the time being, I have time on my hands. 

“When I saw the appeal to make scrubs for the NHS I jumped at the chance to help 

“This is extremely important to me as my daughter works for NHS Scotland and several other close family members are also working on the front line for NHS England. 

“In a small way I feel I can support them by doing what I love most - sewing, and am grateful to be able to help.” 

Ms Griffiths said: “in these strange times it’s easy to feel powerless but so grateful to those working on the front line. So, I am happy to be able to use my own skills to help in some small way.” 

TV’s Dr Dawn Harper, who is an ambassador for the award-winning theatre, said: “I’m so proud of the wardrobe department at the Barn Theatre for stepping up and offering their services to make scrubs for local surgeries.” 

Dr Dawn has launched a streaming show from The Barn available on the theatre’s social media channels. Others to get involved in other weekly broadcasts include, renowned mountaineer and explorer Kenton Cool and for children Tweedy, the much loved Giffords Circus clown, hosts a weekly lunch time show that has included guest appearances from actors Helena Bonham Carter and This Country’s - Daisy Cooper. 

Since launching in 2018, the Barn Theatre has gained national recognition by producing 12 Built By Barn shows to upwards of 80,000 audience members and being awarded The Stage Awards’ Best Fringe Theatre of the Year Award 2019. 

Its contribution to the local community stretches further than just the theatre with large scale outreach programmes, school workshops and collaborative projects around the centenary of the First World War, the ‘record-breaking’ Cirencester Human Poppy, and The Cirencester Advent Festival that have enhanced the well-being of the community and draw thousands of visitors to the town. 

The theatre has also worked with disadvantaged communities and charities including Cirencester Housing for Young People (CHYP) and Age UK Gloucestershire.

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