Women’s Refuge benefits from New Hardy Players production


A CHEQUE for £600 has been presented to West Dorset Women’s Refuge Welfare Committee, proceeds of the New Hardy Players’ performance of Stronghold of Happiness, by Devina Symes, at Dorchester Corn Exchange, last November.

The play was adapted from Devina Symes’ novel and tells a story that has its roots in historical events in Dorset in the Second World War. Devina said: “I wanted to turn the tables on the usual narrative about war and look at the unspeakable traumas sometimes experienced by vulnerable women left on the home front. And as the story includes the need for a women’s refuge, I could think of no better charity to give the profits to than the West Dorset Women’s Refuge Welfare Committee.”

Molly Rennie from the charity said: “For those of us working within the Welfare Committee this has been a huge opportunity to raise awareness of domestic abuse locally. The need is as relevant now as it was in the time portrayed in the play. Many families live in fear. Please call Paragon anytime on 0800 032 5204 for help or advice regarding domestic abuse.”

Mark North’s photograph shows: Devina Symes presenting the cheque to Molly Rennie, with, from left: Mark Cummins, Andy Worth, chairman of the New Hardy Players:, Barry White, Peter Allison, Sonia Morris, Rod Drew, Brian Caddy, Alistair Chisholm and Chrissie White.