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Theatre in the Parks series in the Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds, and West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village offers families a wide range of entertainment

Join Robin Hood and his merry men, wander through the secret garden, join Jemima Puddle-Duck’s quest to have a family, find out about the legend that is Beowolf and delve into Angelica Sprocket’s pockets as Theatre in the Parks returns this summer.

It’s the chance to see a range of family-friendly theatre events in the open air in Bury’s Abbey Gardens and West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village. So get ready to pack a picnic, grab a blanket or camping chair and prepare to be entertained.

First up, in the Abbey Gardens, is The Unusual Adventures of Robin Hood on Monday, July 29, at midday and 3.30pm, performed by Hobgoblin Theatre Company.

Robin Hood and His Merry Men, just onw of the shows for the Theatre in the Parks series
Robin Hood and His Merry Men, just onw of the shows for the Theatre in the Parks series

This musical show is full of audience interaction and physical comedy as Robin Hood and his merry men outwit the dastardly Sheriff of Nottingham with more than a little help from Maid Marian.

The Abbey Gardens is also the venue for The Secret Garden on Thursday, August 1, with shows at 2pm and 6.30pm, suitable for 6+.

A new re-imagining of the classic Frances Hodgson Burnett book by The Plandits, this energetic show is full of music, puppetry, interaction and laughs.

Join Mary, Colin and Dickon as they tell you the story of their favourite place in the world - The Secret Garden.

We move down the road for the next production which sees Beatrix Potter’s The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck revealed at West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village on Tuesday, August 6, at midday and 3pm.

Not allowed to hatch her eggs at the farm, Jemima goes in search of a nesting place in the forest and meets a charming ‘gentlemen’ who offers her the perfect nesting space in his wood shed. But why is it full of feathers and why is he asking her to collect herbs for roast duck? Back at the farm, Collie dog Kep puts two and two together, but will he be in time to rescue Jemima from her fate?

Staying at West Stow, a family-friendly adaptation of the legend of Beowolf by Quill & Inkling takes to the stage on Wednesday, August 7, at midday and 3.30pm.

The Hall of Hrothgar is cursed and the monstrous Grendel comes to feast on those who sleep and spread woe through the land. The call goes out for a hero strong enough to lift the curse and kill Grendel and young Beowolf steps up.

Expect poetry, puppetry and action-packed fight sequences.

And rounding off the series of outdoor theatre is Quentin Blake’s Angelica Sprocket’s Pockets, again at West Stow, on Friday, August 9, at midday.

Angelica Sprocket lives next door and her overcoat has pockets galore. Be prepared to be surprised, thrilled and tickled pink at the marvellous things she keeps in them.

Filled with Folksy’s live music, puppetry, audience interaction and a touch of madness, it’s a perfect treat for all the family.