Cumbria Crack

Archers actors fly in for premiere of Croglin play

The Earth from the Air. Art credit: Paul Terry.

[C]roglin Village Hall will be the venue for the premiere of a new play by local author Sharon Gosling. The Earth from the Air is set to star Sean Connolly — who plays Keith Horrobin in The Archers — and Bella Hamblin, who has also been heard in The Archers, as well as opposite her husband Sean in Radio 4’s popular drama Home Front.

“The Earth from the Air is the story of what happens when Gabe, a woman with a fear of flying, confronts her fears by trying to learn to fly out of Carlisle airport. Sean plays Huw, her flying instructor,” says Sharon, who lives in Croglin. “But the play also encompasses a little of the history of the fells around the village.”

“Because the play was written for radio, that’s how it will be performed, as a ‘live radio play’,” Sharon adds. “That means the actors will have their scripts with them and their performances will be augmented by sound effects and music that has been composed specially for this production. We’ve had great support from the local community as well Eden Arts, the council and several local businesses. Sean and Bella are kindly donating their services, too, so all the proceeds will be going to the Village Hall, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary this year, to help keep it going as an important centre of village life for another 80 years.”

There are just two performances of this hour-long ‘live radio play’, on Friday 27th and Saturday 28th of October. Tickets are £12 each, and include dinner before the show: attendees, who should arrive for 7.30pm, will receive a Pie and a Pint, as well as the Play!

Tickets are available from Withnail Books, at the Brunswick Yard in Penrith (opposite Booths), or online at:

Sean and Bella photo credit

Sean Connolly is an actor & voice artist known for voicing 10 characters in Aardman’s Oscar, Golden Globe and BAFTA-nominated movie Shaun the Sheep, and also playing Hector the Llama in their Emmy-winning 2015 Christmas Special Shaun the Sheep: The Farmer’s Llamas. He plays ‘the Ambridge Fire-Starter’ Keith Horrobin in The Archers, and has also appeared in many Doctor Who audio dramas — where he first worked with Sharon Gosling.

Bella Hamblin has been an actress for almost 25 years, working in television, film, theatre and radio drama. Her television appearances include Emmerdale, The Forsyte Saga and A Touch of Frost, while her radio credits include The Archers, and Home Front, in which she and her husband Sean Connolly play Hilda and Ernie Moore.

Sharon Gosling (photo credit Lucien Xavier)

Sharon Gosling’s books include the trilogy The Diamond Thief (which won the Redbridge Children’s Award in 2014), The Ruby Airship and The Sapphire Cutlass, the teen horror novel FIR, and official TV tie-in titles for the popular CBBC series, Wolf Blood. Sharon writes books and articles about television and film, and has written, produced and directed audio dramas. Sharon lives in the village of Croglin, in Cumbria.

Croglin Village Hall, CA4 9RZ

  • Friday 27th October at 7.30pm
  • Saturday 28th October at 7.30pm

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