IF it’s laughs you’re after, look no further than Monica Wilson and her friends.
The jovial Hartlepool woman is treasurer of the town’s Encore drama group and it’s merriment all the way whenever they get together.
But for some mysterious reason, Encore’s numbers are dwindling and Monica is hoping the Hartlepool Mail’s support can help swell them once more.
“We have been going since 2000,” said Monica. “We started off with 12 people, but circumstances change with the passage of time and we are now depleted to four.
“We don’t know why, though. When we meet up, we laugh and we laugh.”
The loyal band of Jean Rowntree as secretary, Monica as treasurer, Margaret Jackson and Pat Thompson meet once a week at Monica’s home and rehearse performances which have a very specific theme.
Encore spreads the message of the importance of safety in the home and has taken its message to places such as care homes and rest homes in an area covering Newcastle, Peterlee, Shotton, Wingate and various stops across Hartlepool.
Monica explained: “Our programme started when the police were doing a talk about crime prevention at a venue, and we were invited to do a follow-up.
“But our follow-up was not like their talk. Theirs was all about the do’s and dont’s. Our follow-up was humorous.”
The safety messages are wide and varied.
“We have done fire prevention, safety in the home, and safety at Christmas.
“We have done performances about the Hartlepool leg of The Tall Ships Races and we do it in a jokey and funny fashion. People tell us they like it that way and we think it helps to reinforce the message.
“Our aim is to put over serious messages in a light-hearted fashion.
“If our audiences enjoy it half as much as we enjoy performing, we will be more than satisfied.”
She urged people: “Please consider joining us.”
Anyone interested in finding out more should contact either 07999 810776, or 07939 876216.