Abbey Theatre banner vanishes from St Albans park railings

A banner announcing the reopening of the Abbey Theatre has disappeared from the railings at the entrance to Verulamium Park.

Theatre manager Tina Swain by the railings at the entrance to Verulamium Park where a banner announcing the reopening of the Abbey Theatre has disappeared from. - Credit: Abbey Theatre

A banner announcing the reopening of the Abbey Theatre has disappeared from the railings at the entrance to Verulamium Park.

After months of closure, the marketing team at the St Albans theatre wanted to let local people know that they would be opening soon.

They invested in three banners which went up at the beginning of April, including one in their usual site on the railings at the end of Mud Lane.

But after only two weeks, this banner has vanished, leaving behind just the cut cable ties.

"One of our volunteers phoned me to ask why it had been taken down," said theatre manager Tina Swain.

"I went to look and found the space empty except for the black plastic cable ties on the ground behind the railings."

Tina added: "I contacted the council who responded immediately to say they didn’t know of any reason why the banner might have been removed.

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"I also spoke to the centre manager at Westminster Lodge, with whom we share the space, but no one has seen our banner."

To Tina’s knowledge, a banner has only been taken on one previous occasion some years ago, when it mysteriously reappeared on the front steps of the theatre the day after the production closed.

The Abbey Theatre has been displaying its banners on the railings at the bottom of Holywell Hill for several decades, and permission to do so is in their lease.

"It’s so disappointing," said Tina. "The banner is of no use or value to anyone but us and it's frustrating to lose it at such a critical time.

"The railings at the entrance to the park provide our main ‘shop window’ and it’s where our customers look for information on forthcoming events.

"Our first production, Endgame by Samuel Beckett, opens on May 18, so we will be replacing the missing banner with the one advertising this play – and hoping for the best!"

The theatre would love to get the banner back, so if anyone has information or knows its whereabouts, please contact Tina via the theatre’s website www.abbeytheatre.org.uk, where you can also book for future productions.

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