Puppet auction raises thousands for Norwich theatre

Norwich Puppet Theatre's Celebrity Puppet Auction

Norwich Puppet Theatre's Celebrity Puppet Auction - Credit: Andy Crouch

An eclectic mix of colourful characters created by artists and celebrities has raised thousands of pounds for Norwich Puppet Theatre.

Norwich Puppet Theatre's Celebrity Puppet Auction. Photo: Andy Crouch.

Norwich Puppet Theatre's Celebrity Puppet Auction. Photo: Andy Crouch. - Credit: Andy Crouch

Actress Maureen Lipman, former Children's Laureate Michael Rosen, and artist Colin Self were among the many people to answer the theatre's appeal to create puppets, and this week their designs went under the hammer at a charity auction at the theatre.

Norwich Puppet Theatre's Celebrity Puppet Auction.

Norwich Puppet Theatre's Celebrity Puppet Auction. - Credit: Andy Crouch

About £5,500 was raised from the puppets plus a further £700 from extra donations.

The puppet that went for the most money was a skeleton puppet created by the photographer Professor Richard Sawdon Smith which sold for £400. The other puppets that went for the highest prices were: a pair of puppets by artist Colin Self which together sold for £320; animator Professor Suzie Hanna's Owl and Pussycat-themed puppets which went for £260: artist Bruer Tidman's creation which raised £200; and illustrator Polly Dunbar's puppet which sold for £170.

Ian Woods, operations manager at the theatre, said a big thank you to everybody involved in the event that was part of the theatre's 35th anniversary celebrations.

He said: 'It was a great celebration of Norwich Puppet Theatre, and it showed the support that is out there for us in the community - from the generosity of the people who gave their time and attention to decorate the puppets to the people who came to bid for them on auction night.

'The money will help to support our education and outreach work, taking shows and workshops out into the community.'

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Now the theatre is getting ready for its Christmas show, Rumpelstiltskin.

For more details of show dates and times, visit www.puppettheatre.co.uk

Do you have a Norwich arts story? Email arts correspondent Emma Knights at emma.knights@archant.co.uk