CRAPPPS at 40 – Party Time 17/03/2018

Bold Tom (Calverton revival version) and his entourage of oddly-dressed comrades first knocked on the doors of pubs in Calverton, Notts, and its surrounding villages in January 1979.

In January 2018, the Calverton Real Ale and Plough Play Preservation Society (CRAPPPS) performed its 40th consecutive annual tour of Plough Plays, fondly recalling the contribution, enthusiasm and dedication [*] of group members past and present and local legends absent, beloved and never-to-be forgotten.

The group has seen numerous changes in personnel over the years. It has seen triumph and tragedy, hurrahs and heartbreak, fair weather and foul – but has persevered nonetheless with this glorious owd folk tradition with a spring in its step, ale in its belly and pride in its heart.

Somewhere in the middle of all of it, CRAPPPS has raised nearly £30,000 for children’s charities.

It’s also added a new Calvertonian tradition (the St George’s Play) to its canon, now in its 8th year of touring and going strong.

So we’d like to invite you to a right owd knees up at Calverton Village Hall on Saturday 17 March 2018 to celebrate – er, well all of the above – and to raise a glass to another 40 years on the road for CRAPPPS.

It’ll be a foot stomping, toe-tapping ceilidh with the brilliant Sheepish Grin (John Crawford and Richard Mecia – pictured above) presiding. There’ll be mumming, merriment and memory-laning. All proceeds from ticket sales will go to Nottingham NSPCC.

So … in comes you? Tickets now on sale (£8 adults / FREE for under 15s) – you can ring 07491 644581 to book or book online here.

[*] = surely ‘medication’ – Ed.

 

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Plough Play 40! We thank you for civility …

… and what you’ve given us here. After a week getting back to normal after a simply storming 2018 CRAPPPS Plough Play run, the rather terrific news is that the efforts of the team over last weekend (11-13 January) saw Beelzy’s dripping pan bulging to the tune of £937.94 for Nottingham NSPCC (not including the 40 Vietnamese Dong, 1 Jersey 20 pence piece, 4 US cents and 1 Morrison’s shopping trolley token).

Special thanks to the pubs who invited us in so hospitably, the crowds who received us so wonderfully and all of you who gave so generously.  We’ll be back in March with a special CRAPPPS 40th anniversary celebration (event details to be announced next week) and in April with our St George’s Play.

Hurrah!

2018 Plough Play Run Finished

And so the final sing out at Calverton’s Admiral Rodney heralds the end of another mighty fine run of the CRAPPPS Plough Play.

Another year down, another few hundred pounds raised for that most excellent of causes, Nottingham NSPCC. As our players enter recovery and reach for the painkillers, the business of counting the takings from our very special 40th anniversary tour has begun. Soon we’ll be able to report how much you so generously donated.

Thank you for your hospitality, generosity and friendship over the weekend of 11-13 January – it was hugely appreciated.

Stuff To Do

Organising the annual CRAPPPS Plough Play can be very demanding.

That said, Beelzy’s list of jobs gets weirder every year.

We presume the last item is something to do with his costume.

Best not mention it, heh?

  • The Calverton Plough Play runs this week, Thursday 11 – Saturday 13 January. See our tour list here – we very much look forward to seeing you! 

 

Proper bunch of rogues ‘n’ all

Like a well-drilled military operation or something (really? Ed) the somewhat eccentric gentlefolk of CRAPPPS hit the road Thursday to Saturday this week (11 – 13 January) on their 40th consecutive annual Plough Play tour. Made with lashings of ale and mummery goodness, the play is based on a script first performed in Cropwell Bishop in 1890.

The tour takes in 9 villages, 1 town and 17 shows as per the gig list here, with all proceeds going to the mighty cause that is Nottingham NSPCC for which more than £20k has been raised by the group so far.

This year’s team (in order of appearance) is:

  • Musicians – Paul Cullen, Jill Howard, Andrew Pattison
  • Crew – Dawn Cullen, Jay Reilly, Sandra Reilly

Much thanks to our full supporting cast of musicians and roadies without whom it would all be a bit much, to be fair.

Guess what? You can click on the names linked above for some truly lovely (really again? Ed) pen pictures of our handsome and attractive cast. All biographies have been supplied by the individuals in question (apart from Eddie’s, which we were forced to make up because he didn’t return our emails).

See you at the weekend, mi duks!

Are you a 2018 Plough Play pub?

If you are, huge thanks for opening your doors to us on 11 – 13 January 2018 – your hospitality is very much appreciated. In letting us entertain you, you’re helping to preserve a vital English tradition. Our group has performed a Plough Play every year since 1979, based on a script first written in 1890.

You’re also helping us to raise funds for a great charity – Nottingham NSPCC (for whom we have raised more than £20k so far). To that end, it would be amazing if you could try to get as many people in your pubs to watch us (and donate anything they can afford) as possible.

Every penny you place in our hats and dripping pans goes directly to charity. Every drop of ale we consume on your premises we pay for ourselves.

We’re doing 17 shows across 9 villages and 1 town – Arnold, Blidworth, Calverton, Epperstone, Farnsfield, Lambley, Lowdham, Oxton, Southwell and Woodborough.

If you’re a Plough Play pub, we’re coming to see you on the date and time you see here.

If you’re not a Plough Play pub, we very much hope you’ll bear us in mind for next year (and maybe drop us a line).

Thanks again. See you soon!

2018 Calverton Plough Play – FINAL Tour Dates

January 2018’s CRAPPPS Plough Play is on its way with final tour dates listed below. We’re playing 9 villages and 1 town with 16 ports of call planned. Any changes to the schedule will be posted on this webpage, so check here first if you’re planning to come out to see us.

The 2018 tour will see us undertake our 40th consecutive year of Plough Play performances. The first ever run took place in 1979. Proceeds, as ever, will go to Nottinghamshire NSPCC.

Thursday 11th January 2018

  • Robin Hood and Little John, Arnold – 7:45 pm
  • The Reindeer, Southwell – 8:45 pm
  • The Final Whistle, Southwell – 9:30 pm

Friday 12th January 2018

  • Admiral Rodney, Calverton – 7:15 pm
  • The Green Dragon, Oxton – 7:50 pm
  • The Plough, Farnsfield – 8:20 pm
  • The Lion, Farnsfield – 8:40 pm
  • The Fox and Hounds, Blidworth – 9:15 pm
  • Nag’s Head, Woodborough – 10:00 pm
  • Four Bells, Woodborough – 10:25 pm

Saturday 13th January 2018

  • Gleaners, Calverton – 7:20 pm
  • World’s End, Lowdham – 8:00 pm
  • The Railway, Lowdham – 8:30 pm
  • Robin Hood, Lambley – 9:00 pm
  • Woodlark, Lambley – 9:25 pm
  • Cross Keys, Epperstone – 10:00 pm
  • Admiral Rodney, Calverton – 10:30 pm

2018 Calverton Plough Play – Provisional Tour Dates

January 2018’s CRAPPPS Plough Play is on its way with provisional (i.e. subject to change, folks!) tour dates listed below. We’re due to play 9 villages and 1 town with 16 ports of call planned. Final confirmed tour dates will be announced soon.

The 2018 tour will see us undertake our 40th consecutive year of Plough Play performances. The first ever run took place in 1979. Proceeds, as ever, will go to Nottinghamshire NSPCC.

Thursday 11th January 2018

  • Robin Hood and Little John, Arnold – 7:45 pm
  • The Reindeer, Southwell – 8:45 pm
  • The Final Whistle, Southwell – 9:30 pm

Friday 12th January 2018

  • Admiral Rodney, Calverton – 7:15 pm
  • The Green Dragon, Oxton – 7:50 pm
  • The Plough, Farnsfield – 8:20 pm
  • The Lion, Farnsfield – 8:40 pm
  • The Fox and Hounds, Blidworth – 9:15 pm
  • Nag’s Head, Woodborough – 10:00 pm
  • Four Bells, Woodborough – 10:25 pm

Saturday 13th January 2018

  • Gleaners, Calverton – 7:20 pm
  • World’s End, Lowdham – 8:00 pm
  • The Railway, Lowdham – 8:30 pm
  • Robin Hood, Lambley – 9:00 pm
  • Woodlark, Lambley – 9:25 pm
  • Cross Keys, Epperstone – 10:00 pm
  • Admiral Rodney, Calverton – 10:30 pm

Boldly Gone.

He’ll always be remembered for being the consummate master of ceremonies, effortlessly keeping the most raucous audiences under control with a smirk on his face and a pint in his hand.

Mind you, he’ll also be remembered for the dodgy raincoat and wellies and for gurning uncontrollably whenever he sang The Molecatcher.

Former Ribboner, Recruiting Sergeant and, latterly, our rather brilliant Bold Tom for the last 20 or so years (*), Mister Barry Nyblen has decided to retire from CRAPPPS.

We’ll miss our Baz terribly. His playful (but ultimately ruthless) treatment of hecklers has been the stuff of Plough Play legend. His knack of spotting the potential for a gag in any situation has kept all of us on our toes – because sometimes the gag has been squarely on us.

His respect for the wonderful tradition our group seeks to uphold has provided example and inspiration to numerous newer members (including me, coming into the fold somewhat nervously in 2007).

For all of the above, and for his effort and contribution over many long and laughter-filled years with CRAPPPS, sincere thanks and appreciation to our Barry are due. It won’t be quite the same without him.

Here’s Barry as the Ribboner in a BBC radio interview in 1996.

And here are some photos of him, arsing about.

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(*) = we’ve never been that good at record-keeping.

Beelzy x.

CRAPPPS Record Fundraising Haul!

Okay. We’re fashionably late with this news, but nonetheless very proud to announce a record-breaking CRAPPPS fundraising total of £1,356.34 for charity this year.

Nottingham NSPCC benefited to the tune of £1,024.29 from our Plough Play exploits back in January, with the Alzheimer’s Society picking up £332.05 from April’s run of our St George’s Play.

  • Psst! Are you a former cast member of the CRAPPPS Plough Play, or been otherwise involved with the group in the past? Guess what? Our play is turning 40! We’re planning to celebrate in 2018 and would love to hear from you. Please send a message to us via the form on the website’s ‘Contact’ page.