Founder member Tony Lewis recalls the origins of CRAPPPS.

Calverton Real Ale and Plough Play Preservation Society (affectionately known as CRAPPPS) was formed in the Autumn of 1978. It was made up from stalwart male members of the Calverton Theatre Group. We were ideally suited with experience in learning lines, voice projection, donning of a variety of costumes and audience reaction and heckling.

Plough Play 1979 02 344x450Thursday night was practice night for both the Plough Play and morris team (when in season), for Friday was drama practice night. Home brewing was rife in Calverton in the late 1970s. We met at the homesteads of proud home brewers. Those that didn’t brew brought various fodder in the form of pork pies, black puddings, cheeses and home baked goodies.

Plough practices could start any time after Bonfire Night or when the brews were at their best. Our favourite hostelry was the Cross Keys, Epperstone, hosted by Mr Barry Taylor where we met in the back room. Much music and song was to be had there washed down by Kimberley Ales from a large enamel jug.

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Our summer time pub crawls (on bikes) was an experience never to be forgotten. The Village Get Together, The Calverton Miners Welfare, The Working Men’s Club and the RNLI Group activities were all frequented by the players and are now mere memories of Happy Daze.

NEP 1979 Clipping 350x455The original line up of 1979 was:

  • Tom Fool – Ken Wood
  • Farmer’s Man – Michael Cupitt
  • Recruiting Sergeant – Tony Lewis
  • Lady Bright and Gay – Tony Buckley
  • Doctor – John Calvert
  • Beelzebub – Paul Prior


  •  Malcolm Frier (Concertina)
  • John Pett (Fiddle)

Last and by no means least was Dave Rockley (Transport Manager).

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Quote from the letter of 12 January 1979:

‘Many thanks for allowing members of the Calverton Theatre Group to perform the Plough Play in your bars last weekend. Our total collection for the eight pubs was £64.33. We have donated this money to the Nottingham branch of the National Children’s Home.

Yours sincerely

John Calvert’

Words and logo artwork – Tony Lewis

Photo contributions – Tony Lewis / John Calvert