The People

Obviously it’s mainly Sally, Blue, Becky, Sam, Gloria, Tim, Cherry and Charlie who do the heavy lifting, but over the years they’ve had just a little bit of help from some good friends.

In the beginning …

Puppets with Purpose was originally set up by Mary YoungmanEmma Croft and Elaine Youngman. The original ladies were soon joined by Phil Weston, completing the team who debuted at Hertford Baptist Church’s annual “all-together” service at the Castle Hall in 2007.

As non-fee charging volunteers, budget was tight, so for the early years the team worked with a stage cunningly fashioned from plumbing supplies, stored in a wooden box that was a minimum two-person lift to move. Said box also doubled as a back-stage platform to bring the ladies up to the same height as Phil! Fortunately, due to the generosity of our home church, the team were eventually able to replace this arrangement with a proper set of staging, making for much easier transport and setup.

Up to date

Time marches on, and sadly both Phil and Elaine have had to take a step back due to other commitments, although there’s always the possibility of a guest-return.

The current team is made up of:

Emma Croft: Emma does a lot of the admin and keeps the website up to date. She’s the person you’ll probably contact first if you send us an email. Definitely happier in the stage, not in front of it, she shares a house with Sally – they can often be found sharing a nice pot of tea.
Catherine (Katy) Forrester: Katy joined up in 2011, and as a professional actress brings real expertise and stagecraft to our performances, as well as invaluable advice and guidance during rehearsals. Katy and Cherry are currently negotiating to see whether they will work as housemates.
Dawn Weston: Dawn takes the lead in the “up front” part of what we do, and is the face of PwP out in front of the curtain. She also writes some of the scripts, and keeps everyone’s spirits high no matter what.
Mary Youngman: Mary is definitely official PwP seamstress and wardrobe mistress! A whiz with the sewing machine and general creativity, there’s little that’s beyond her. Although Blue, Becky, Charlie, Tim, Gloria and Sam visit most of the team, they can usually be found chilling out at Mary’s – they seem to prefer her easy-going style and exciting cooking!

Various friends and spouses are also pressed into service from time to time as prop-makers, road crew, tech support and general dogsbodies.