Autumn sale at community “dressing up box”

8th September 2020

Are you looking for a retro dress, historical outfit, or a quirky panto costume?

Then a community wardrobe having a “Covid clear-out” may have just what you are looking for.

And the items snapped up from the Sheringham-based Aladdin’s cave of fabulous and fun fashion will provide a welcome funding for the town’s lockdown-hit Little Theatre.

The Community and Theatre Wardrobe began more than 40 years ago as a store for costumes used at the arts venue.

But, since 2008, it has been a separate non-profit-making business, run by volunteers, though it retains strong ties to the theatre and continues to provide costumes for many of the professional and amateur productions staged there.

The wardrobe has also been in lockdown and has lost income from lack of hire fees, but it has been using the time, and a Covid small business grant, to audit its 10,000-strong collection kept in a unit off the Weybourne Road.

One of its directors Libby Henshaw said: “We have got so much stuff it is difficult to see the rails. So we want to find good homes for some of our items.”

The wardrobe has historical outfits and accessories from medieval times to 1960s, uniforms, theatrical costumes, and some classic retro and vintage labels.

As well as being hired for professional, amateur and school drama productions and events, they are used for fancy dress parties, murder mysteries and even weddings.

“We are not closing, just trying to thin out our collection so we can see the wood for the trees – with sales and donations helping the theatre,” added Libby who runs the wardrobe with fellow volunteers Nona Gray, Nan Smith, Steve Tuck and Jenni Randall.

A costume and accessories sale will be held at The Little Theatre on Sunday September 20 from 11am to 3pm, including some 1940s style items.

If anyone is interested in any particular group of items they should email to flag up what they are looking for and to arrange viewing by appointment.

Community and theatre wardrobe stall at Mannington Hall