Tom’s Wooing


The team had several attempts at Wooing Play texts starting with Easter 1976 and finally settling on Tom’s Wooing, from Boulby, Lincolnshire, in 1979; this play has formed the backbone of the team’s performances until recent years.   Again the traditional text was modified by Stuart Rankin with contributions from other team members as the play evolved, to improve the flow of the script.


These pictures, taken in the square at Masham on Easter Monday 27th March, 1978, show the second revision of the play, the first has (l – r) Recruiting Sergeant: Jim Mayer (who adopted the Windsor Davis “Aint ‘alf ‘ot” sergeant character), Tom: Dave Dearlove and Drummer: Dennis Ward; the second shows Doctor’s Assistant: Dominic Ward, Farmer’s Man: Stuart Rankin, Old Jane (deceased): Graham Bickerdike, Doctor: Chas Marshall, Tom: Dave Dearlove and the Lady: John Burrell.

This picture of the final version was taken on Saturday 2nd September, 1989 in Malton Market place on a tour to coincide with a Beer Festival at the Schoolhouse, Lower Marishes, owned by former team member, Jim Bell.   The characters are (l – r) Farmer’s Man: Doug Child,   Eric the horse: Eric the horse, Doctor’s Assistant: Vince Doemling, Old Jane (deceased): John Hutt, Doctor: John Burrell, Lady:Kevin Young, Tom: Dave Dearlove and the  Recruiting Sergeant: Martin Ord.

This play was performed alongside the original Hero combat play, at the 10th Anniversary, with the addition of a Nurse who performed the cure….enough said!!   Those who had seen the play before and drifted off to the pub bitterly regret it to this day!!

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