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Grandparent Wins a Sunderland School a Free Puppet Show


Jun 16, 2017

Schoolchildren from a Sunderland primary school were entertained by a traditional puppet show today thanks to a Grandparent winning a Facebook Competition


Pips Puppets performed a traditional puppet show at Plains Farm Academy on Thursday 8 June with a bespoke story in the style of old-fashioned fairy tales.

The Facebook competition run by Pips Puppets offered the opportunity for the winner to win their school a unique puppet show experience, from Pips Puppets. It was won by Julie Heskett whose son and granddaughter currently attend the school.

“I’m thrilled to have won. All my children and grandchildren have been educated at Plains Farm School so I’ve been going there for nearly 30 years,” said Julie Heskett. “I saw this competition and entered because as my eldest ones used to love puppet shows and I thought it would be great for all the kids to have a chance to see one.”

The puppet company is based in Sunderland and is owned by Philip Thompson who has recently returned to the northeast, after working as a children’s entertainer in London.

“I have followed in my mother’s footsteps as a puppeteer. And she started her business as a puppeteer after I told my teacher at my school, when I was 7, that my mother performed puppet shows, and unbeknown to her I offered her services to the school. That was the start of her successful career so to recognise this I decided to offer a school a free show,” said, Philip Thompson, the puppeteer at Pips Puppets.

“Schools face so many pressures on their budgets nowadays and I really enjoyed entertaining the children with a free puppet show as we approach the end of this academic year. The children were brilliant. They got all of the jokes, sang along, and joined in wherever they could. It was a great show.”

“I really enjoy being a puppeteer. Bringing joy to people through the art of performance is a great thing to be able to do. In puppetry, you may be hidden from the audience but you can see their smiles, interaction and genuine enjoyment from behind the theatre. The shows really try to encourage interaction and bring out a child’s personality, and even many of the shy children actually love getting involved.”

Pips Puppets show can regularly be seen at Hall Hill Farm and also birthday parties and events across the region. The 40-minute puppet show aims to entertain children age 2 to 7 but also those older too. For more information about the puppet shows see: www.pipspuppets.com

By Emily