It could be curtains for Brent’s annual pantomime

After 45 years the Chameleons Amateur Dramatic Society is bowing out

It could be curtains for the borough’s annual pantomime after health and safety bosses condemned the stage at Brent Town Hall.

The Chameleons Amateur Dramatic Society has been performing in Brent for more than 45 years but was told last week it will not be able to use The Paul Daisley Hall following a routine health and safety check.

Its Olympic-themed production of Dick Whittington now hangs in the balance unless an alternative venue is found, one which the group can afford.

Robert Spolander, chairman, said: “We face the real threat of not performing a pantomime this January.

“As a group, the pantomime has a special place in the hearts of its members and patrons. Thousands of audience members can tell you just how much enjoyment they have gained from what we do and how vital it is to the borough.”

The Chameleons began life as the Neasden Methodist Dramatic Society in 1966. Its annual pantos were incredibly successful and always a sell-out, leading to the group moving the pantomimes to Brent Town Hall, in Forty Lane, Wembley, in 1981. It has produced some of the very best family entertainment in the borough.

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But Mr Spolander believes the council let the hall fall into a state of disrepair. He said: “Lighting, sound and other technical areas failed to move with the times. Theatrical requirements lacked priority.”

A council spokeswoman said: “Theatre groups could still use the hall but the stage now has more limited facilities that might make it difficult to mount more ambitious productions. We cannot justify upgrading the equipment because of the limited future use the hall will have.”

n If you can help The Chameleons find a venue which seats between 200 and 400 people to save the panto call Janette Hutchinson on 07981324475 or email venuesearch@thechameleons.co.uk