The Market Theatre, Cowbridge

The best little theatre in the Vale

It Can Damage Your Health

Eric Chappell

 On a hospital ward. What can possibly go wrong?


 A comedy based on Eric Chappell's TV series "Only When I Laugh" following the fortunes of three men in a hospital surgical ward as they form an uneasy alliance to combat against the ups and downs of hospital life.


Mr Gibbs – Mike Chapman
Christine – Valerie Fellows
Higgins – Jeff Grist
Terri – Camilla Hopkin
Palmer – Kelly Merritt
Gary – Anthony Murphy


Director – Chris Harries-Bowen  
Stage Manager – Gethyn Clarke
Set & Sound & Lights –  Patrick Davies
Poster Artwork design – Sharon Tobutt

2nd - 5th May 2018

Bedroom Farce



Alan Ayckbourn

Ernest and Delia are going out to celebrate their Wedding Anniversary.  On the same Saturday evening, newly- weds, Malcolm and Kate,  are holding a House-warming party, among the guests at this party are old friends, Nick and Jan. Things are thrown into confusion when Nick is unable to go and it becomes clear that also attending the party are Trevor, Ernest and Delia’s unstable son and his equally batty wife, Susannah.  To complicate matters further Jan is Trevor’s old flame, is there still a spark between them? Over the course of one night, matters come to a head for all four couples.


8th - 11th November 2017

The Golf Umbrella

by William Douglas Home 
Robert, a playwright with a bad case of writers’ block, is inspired to write his next play on the theme on adultery. Having read the first draft, his wife, Susan, claims his seduction scene lacks realism; he clearly has no experience with extra-marital affairs! Susan decides to provide him with the necessary experience, and arranges a romantic liaison for him with an old flame, Sheila. Will Robert pull it off? Just why is Susan so keen for him to have an affair? Can it be hidden from Sheila’s husband, Jim?

Wed 12th July to Sat 15th 2017

An Audience with Murder

An Audience with Murder

This intriguing and multi-layered, witty thriller is full of unexpected twists. A Russian doll of a play, it moves from a seemingly innocuous domestic play reading, through a murder mystery in the classic style, to a final terrifying and violent climax.
The play was written by Colin Wakefield and Roger Leach.

 5th - 8th April 2017

Starring: Jeff Grist, Margaret Bourke, Camilla Hopkin and Stuart Robinson

CADS 70th Birthday

CADS’ 70th Birthday Production:
'Echoes of the War'
‘Echoes of the War’ is four short stories first published in 1918, reflecting on the effect The Great War, as WWI was then known, on the families at home. CADS are performing two of these stories.


A soldier comes to London on five days’ leave during WWI. He is expecting to meet the young lady who has been writing to him and sending him gifts, instead he makes a surprising discovery.

Starring: Rosalie Maddy, Pat Harrison, Brenda Grove, Peter Knapp & Gethyn Clarke



Mr and Mrs Don’s son is one of the many killed on the battlefields during WWI. They each grieve the loss in their own way, and Mrs Don has succumbed to the latest fashion of conducting séances, much to Mr Don’s disapproval.

Starring: Stuart Robinson, Margaret Bourke, Chris Harries-Bowen, Camilla Hopkin, Jeff Grist & Anthony Murphy


Directors – Peg Foster & Caron Reidy

Stage Manager – Laura Clarke

Lighting & Sound – Patrick Davies

Set – Patrick Davies

9th - 12th November 2016

Let's Fly Away

2 one act comedies set in an airport departure lounge:

Airfield by Bob Tucker. Fred and Lucy seem to have stumbled onto a real fly-by-night outfit when they signed up with Young Yettie Airways to fly to Barcelona. No hospitality, no departure lounge, not even any seats, and now there are delays and they might have to fly via Dublin...or is there something else afoot?

Departure by Stephen Smith. Stranded in an airport lounge during the inevitable delay of a holiday flight to Spain, Rosemary and her carbon-copy, not-very-bright son, Andy, draw the reluctant Dennis and Shelia Tippit into a conversation. Sheila has suggested a holiday to try to right her ailing marriage; Rosemary is looking for a wife for Andy.

13th – 16th July 2016

Starring : Caron Reidy / Caron Ford, Mike Chapman, Anthony & Rachel and Chris Harries-Bowen


Wednesday 20th April - Saturday 23rd April 2016

by Anthony Horowitz

When Mark Styler, a writer of glossy 'true crime' paperbacks, tries to get an interview with Easterman, a notorious serial killer, he has no idea what he's walking into. First he has to get past Dr Farquhar, the mercurial head of Fairfields - the asylum where Easterman is kept. But soon he discovers that nothing is what it seems, and he cannot trust that people are who they claim to be. Mindgame is a puzzle-box of a play. A dazzling thriller and a jet black comedy that twists its way towards a shocking conclusion.

Starring Jeff Grist and Mike Chapman and Caron Ford / Caron Reidy


Wednesday, 18th November 2015 to Saturday 22nd November 2015

 by John Godber.

Four bouncers are getting ready to face the masses.
Four lads are getting on the lash.
Four girls are going out of the pull.

It's a typical Friday night out, full of mayhem, magic and Malibu.

Get your tickets to see Bouncers at The Market Theatre this November. If you're not on the list, you're not getting in! 

A Life in the Theatre

Thursday 20th August to Saturday 22nd August

A Life in the Theatre by David Mamet

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Glengarry Glen Ross and Speed-The-Plow, takes us into the lives of two actors: John, young and rising into the first flush of his success; the other Robert, older, anxious, and beginning to wane. In a series of short, spare, and increasingly raw exchanges, we see the estrangement of youth from age and the wider, inevitable and endless cycle of life, in and out of the theatre. 
Directed by Brenda Grove, starring Lloyd Lee and Stuart Robinson

Bara Bread

Theatre Gwalia present:
Bara Bread by Carmen Meadway-Stephens
Friday 29th May


by Eric Chappell

19th to 22nd November 2014

"Blood Brothers", the play version, by Willy Russell

At the Market Theatre, on 23rd to 26th October 2013

CAST  Mickey        — CHRIS BOWEN
         Eddie         — MIKE CHAPMAN
         Narrator      — ANDY CRAGG     
         Mrs Johnstone — JOANNA DANIEL  
         Linda         — CAMILLA HOPKIN
         Mrs Lyons     — CARON REIDY
         Other parts   — ANTHONY MURPHY


"Darkness Falls" - a double bill

At the Market Theatre, on 10th - 13th July 2013


The Monkey's Paw, adapted from a short story by W. W. Jacobs by Jonathan Holloway


... and ...


The Dark, by Jonathon Holloway


The perils of ambition lie at the heart of this double bill of supernatural tales, these plays chilled the blood and left us feeling distinclty uneasy ...

The Business of Murder, by Richard Harris

Performed at the Market Theatre, on 10th - 13th April 2013

Stone :Jeff Grist

Hallet : Gethyn Clarke

Dee : Rachel Arentsen

Directed by Camilla Hopkin.


Stone invites Hallett (a Police detective) and Dee (a successful TV playwright) to his flat to meet his son and wife respectively. Once there it becomes apparent that all is not as it seems. Who is Stone? And why has he organised this little get together?

A psychological thriller with revenge at its heart centres on three people who are seemingly unknown to each other. After many twists and turns leading to a shocking conclusion it transpires that the three are all very much concerned with the business of murder.

 Review in The Gem:

Dangerous Corner, by J B Priestley

Performed at the Market Theatre, 22-24th November 2012

Freda Caplan : Caron Reidy

Miss Mockridge : Camilla Hopkin

Betty Whitehouse : Rachel Arentsen

Olwen Peel : Catrin Thomas-Price

Charles Stanton : Christopher Bowen

Gordon Whitehouse : Andy Cragg

Robert Caplan : Peter Sain-le-Berry

Directed by Brenda Grove


The Truth is a Sleeping Dog, what happens if it wakes?


 A fabulously well attented run, with an excellent review (with gorgeous photo) in the Gem!

Relatively Speaking, by Alan Ayckbourn

Performed at the Market Theatre, 21-24th March 2012

Greg Pointer : Gethyn Clarke

Ginny Whittaker : Camilla Hopkin

Philip Carter : Jeff Grist

Sheila Carter : Rosalie Maddy

Directed by Peggy Foster


Greg and Ginny are living together, but Greg is becoming somewhat suspicious that he is not the only man in her life. He wonders about Ginny's plan 'to visit her parents' and decides to follow her. Ginny is really going to see a considerably older lover, but only in order to break with him. Greg mistakes the ex-lover and his wife for Ginny's parents. Ginny's arrival further compounds an already wildly hilarious situation.


The Secretary Bird, by William Douglas-Home

A very well attended and excellently reviewed production of this West End classic, performed at the Market Theatre in November 2011!  See photo gallery for some more pics of this play, which introduced Caron and Tori to our illustrious cast!


Performed at the Market Theatre, Cowbridge, on 23rd to 26th November, 2011


Hugh Walford - Jeff Grist

Liz Walford - Caron Reidy

John Brownlow - Andy Cragg

Molly Forsyth - Tori Whitworth

Mrs Gray - Peggy Foster

Directed by Camilla Hopkin



Hay Fever, by Noël Coward

Performed at a secret location in Colwinston, one fine evening in July 2011, as a rehearsed reading, but with costumes! See the Photo Gallery for more pictures.


Temporary Shelter by Rose Tremain, adapted for the stage by Peter Sain Ley Berry

Wednesday 13th July to Saturday 16th July, 2011, at the Market Theatre, Cowbridge

World Premier!!

CADS 2011 Summer Production is 'Temporary Shelter' by award winning novelist Rose Tremain.  A rip-roaring comedy, Temporary Shelter  was originally written for radio and won the Giles Cooper Award for the best radio play of 1984.  Set in a French campsite near Avignon the play tells story of what happens when failed businessman, Larry, meets Trist, a failed actor and would-be writer.  Change happens to both of them on the night of a Summer Ball.  Rose Tremain's perception of her characters is acute and sympathetic and the result is an intelligent, witty and memorable comedy.  The play has been adapted for the stage by Peter Sain ley Berry and stars Lloyd Lee.  It  will run from Wednesday 13 July to Saturday 16 July in the Market Theatre, commencing at 7.30pm.  Tickets, £6.00, may be reserved in advance by telephoning 01446-773874.  Rose Tremain said:  "I am delighted that CADS should be performing 'Temporary Shelter.'  I wish the cast and crew the very best of luck with the show.  I had a lot of fun writing it and I am sure the audience will enjoy this production."

Trist - Peter Knapp

Larry - Lloyd Lee

Jean-Louis - Andy Cragg

Peter - Peter Sain ley Berry

Claus - Jake Harrison

Saskia - Rachel Arentsen

Marje - Barbara Lee

Annette - Vicky Cook

Produced, adapted and Directed by Peter Sain ley Berry

The Benefactors, by Michael Frayn

Thursday 24th to Saturday 26th March 2011, at the Market Theatre at 7:30pm

A 1984 play by Micheal Frayn. It is set in the 1960s and concerns an idealistic architect David and his wife Jane and their relationship with the cynical Colin and his wife Sheila. David is attempting to build some new homes to replace the slum housing of Basuto Road and is gradually forced by circumstances into building skyscrapers despite his initial aversion to these. This is set against the backdrop of 1960s new housing projects. Sheila becomes his secretary but it is unclear if she is helping him or the other way around. As the title of the play suggests it is about helping people and explores some of the difficulties inherent in this or in being helped.

Confusions, by Alan Ayckbourn

Wednesday 24th November to Saturday 27th November, 2010 at the Market Theatre, Cowbridge, at 7:30 pm

Lucy spends so much time at home with the kids, that she's started to treat everyone - even the next-door neighbours - like children. Her errant salesman husband, Harry, is miles away in an hotel, and has other things on his mind - namely, the charms of Paula and Bernice. Their waiter also has other concerns - the rapidly deteriorating relationships of diners Polly and Martin, and Mr and Mrs Pearce, for instance. Mrs Pearce is invited to open a village fete - but can't possibly have any inkling of the mayhem which is about to ensue.

Rope, by Patrick Hamilton

Wednesday 8th September to Saturday 11th September, 2010

It's 1929 in London and Brandon wants excitement and little cares how he gets it. He persuades his weak-minded friend, Granillo, to assist him in the murder of a fellow undergraduate. The two place the body in a wooden chest and, to add spice to their handiwork, invite a few acquaintances, including the dead man's father, round to a party, the chest with its gruesome contents serving as a supper table. The tension is worked up gradually; thunder growls outside, the guests leave, and we see the reactions of the two murderers, watched closely by the suspecting Rupert Cadell.

The Importance Of Being Ernest

24th June 2010, in an amazing country house location!

Performed in front a a select audience, with no rehearsal and scripts in our hands.  See photos in the Photo Gallery for more pics of this enjoyable event where a few CADS members "read-through" Oscar Wilde's most famous play, some with period costumes too.

The Little Prince

13th and 14th March 2010, at the Market Theatre
On the Friday with Twinners from Clisson, France in attendance.

The Little Prince production by CADS was an adaptation of this classic French tale by Peter Sain ley Berry, who writes :

Maybe a small introduction is needed to this working script that we used in putting on the above stage version of ʻThe Little Princeʼ for visitors from Clisson, our twin town, on Friday 14 May 2010.

My brief for writing this script was that the show should last about an hour and be comprehensible equally to those who didnʼt understand French and to those who didnʼt understand English. We also had to put the show on with the minimum of preparation.

Inevitably in producing something for the stage - which in this case had to be both short and comic into the bargain - it has been necessary to sacrifice much of the philosophical content and much of the authorʼs original intentions.

When, therefore, during rehearsals the Little Prince puppet fell from the roof of our stage to give me a great bump on the head, I thought that it must have been Saint-Exupéry himself, angry with the liberties that I had taken with his story. But I am sure it wasnʼt.

In this stage production we have only been able to cover some of the grander features of the book. The high peaks and the low valleys that one might see from the air, as it were. But that, as The Little Prince himself might say, is enough with which to begin.

The script is very much as first drafted. We made various small changes subsequently for practical reasons. We also added a song ʻLa Lune Brille Pour Toiʼ - sung by Louise Maddy at the point where the Little Prince departs his planet leaving the flower behind.

My thanks are due to the magnificent cast and crew for a wonderful stage performance.

Peter Sain ley Berry, Cowbridge, May 2010.

A Man for all Seasons by Robert Bolt

24th to 27th March 2010 at the Market Theatre

The play presents a "hero of the self" whose unwavering integrity collides with King Henry VIII's egoistic drive to wrench personal salvation and political permanence for the Tudor line from an unwilling, politically cornered, Pope.

Hamlet in 45 Minutes

9th February 2010 at the Market Theatre, directed by Peter Sain ley Berry

Performed after the CADS AGM which lasted less than 45 minutes, was followed by PSLB's 45 minute long version of Shakespeare's Hamlet. The play, with a cast of 14, overran a bit! It lasted 1½ hours. However, much fun was had by cast and both members of the audience seemed to enjoy it.

Brenda took some stunning photographs during the performance but, as a result of a serious error on her part, Brenda failed to capture an image of the Ghost. It must be said that ghosts are known to be difficult to capture on film or even digitally - it's all to do with their ethereality.

The Ghost was less ethereal when it came to downing milled wine and mince pies.

Towards the end of the evening, most people had forgotten all about the AGM so it had to be held again (not true!).

Three Russian Plays

2nd - 5th December 2009, at the Market Theatre, directed by Peggy Foster, Camilla Hopkin, Jim Grove

Two One-Act Russian plays and a monologue on each of three evenings performed at the Market Theatre :

A great monologue - "Smoking is bad for you" - by Anton Chekhov, directed by Peggy Foster

First play:  "The Anniversary" by Anton Chekhov, directed by Camilla Hopkin

Second play:  "A Provincial Lady" by Ivan Turgenev, directed by Jim Grove


September 2009, Directed by Brenda Grove

The comedy, which raises questions about art and friendship, concerns three long-time friends, Serge, Marc, and Yvan. Serge, indulging his penchant for modern art, buys a large, expensive, completely white painting. Marc is horrified, and their relationship suffers considerable strain as a result of their differing opinions about what constitutes "art". Yvan, caught in the middle of the conflict, tries to please and mollify both of them.

Outside Edge

March 2009, Directed by Peg Foster

Roger is having trouble getting a team together for the afternoons fixture against the British Railways Maintenance Division Yeading East but this proves to be the least of anyones worries. Bob is having marriage trouble as he is still doing odd jobs for his ex-wife beind his current wife Ginnie's back. Dennis is also having marital trouble as his wife seems intent on moving house despite the fact they only moved recently. When he finally puts his foot down she sets fire to his new car. Kevin is trying to fight of his over affectionate wife Maggie while at the same time nurse his injured spinning finger and Alex's new girlfriend ends up shutting herself in the toilets having hysterics. Even Roger's seemingly perfect marriage to Miriam hits the skids when she discovers he was playing away from home in more ways than one on a trip to Dorking last year. Just when it seems things can't get any worse for them, it starts to rain.

Lettice and Lovage

November 2008, Directed by Chris Bumstead

This production, ably directed by Chris Bumstead with Ruth Rees and Shirley Dunsworth taking the leading roles of the eccentric tour guide and her irascible nemesis played to a filled house last November. Congratulations to all involved and especially to Ruth returning to the stage of the Market Theatre after a long absence who tackled the role originally created for Dame Maggie Smith with great aplomb.  We all left the theatre ‘brimming;’ I almost expected to see by the door a Staffordshire soup bowl for the collection of ‘pourboires.’


See our Photo Gallery for more pictures of recent productions